Payzone made a pre-tax loss of E91m in the six months ending March 2009, as cash machine withdrawals and mobile phone top-up transactions fell.

The troubled payment services provider can take some consolation from the reduction in pre-tax loss, which was down from the E166m lost in the equivalent period last year.

Turnover in the same period was up 38% to E583m, boosted by the takeover of Alphyra.

The group closed 840 loss-making cash machines in the UK during the period. Mobile phone top-up transactions in the UK were down by 6% but utility bill payments increased by 11%.

“Payzone has responded to a weak economy by vigorously restructuring its businesses,” said chief executive Mike Maloney.

“The immediate goal is for the company to establish a more appropriate capital structure, and we look forward to achieving a satisfactory outcome from the current discussions with our banks and other finance providers.”