Profit falls 97% at Glasgow Fashion Firm Quiz

Shares of troubled Glasgow-based fashion firm Quiz fell more than 20% on Tuesday after it said profit before tax for the year to March 31 fell 97% to £200,000 — despite its revenue rising 12% to £130.8 million.

Shares of Quiz have lost about 85% of their value in the past year amid revenue and profit warnings.

Quiz chairman Peter Cowgill said: “Given the decline in profits in the current year and further to the business review undertaken in recent months, the board consider that it is appropriate to suspend dividend payments in order to restore profitability and support the growth of the business. 

“As a result, the board does not recommend the payment of a final dividend.”

Cowgill added: “In terms of restoring profitability actions have been identified to eliminate, where practical, loss making activities and to target cost reductions across the business.”

Short term measures identified include the termination of some third-party online contracts, a reduction in exposure to UK department stores, and “active management” of the firm’s store estate as leases come up for renewal.

Quiz CEO Tarak Ramzan said: “As announced in March, the board and senior management team have carefully reflected on our business, strategy and prospects to ensure that we are able to navigate what remains a volatile trading environment and restore profitable growth.

“We have concluded this review process with sharpened focused and a clearer vision of what is required to ensure that Quiz succeeds in a dynamic retail sector and achieves its strategic objectives.

“The Quiz brand continues to gain momentum with a growing customer base.

“Whilst trading conditions have remained challenging in the year to date, the board remains confident that underpinned by our flexible business model and an increasing online focus, the group can return to sustainable profitable growth.”

Analysts at Peel Hunt wrote: “Quiz’s strategic review is perfectly sensible from a management consultancy perspective but the real question here is whether the brand can lure back the Love Island watcher.

“It seems that Quiz has lost its way a little bit (Q1 UK trading is slightly better than Q4 but not by much), and rediscovering its fashion edge will stimulate the bottom line much more effectively and sustainably than the mooted cost savings.

“Getting on the core shopper’s wavelength again will be much easier said than done, though, and whilst there is a brand and potential here, it may be some time before everything clicks. Sell.”