A pound store wars has broken out in Blackpool after a budget bakery turned up the heat on its rival.
The Poundbakery, owned by regional chain Sayers, has threatened legal action against the independently owned 99p Takeaway after both businesses opened new premises in the resort town centre on the same day.
Poundbakery claimed 99p Takeaway had infringed its trademark by using the same coloured signage – orange and white.
Now Paul and Lauren Drury, of Preston Old Road, Marton, have replaced their signs at the 99p Takeaway on Abingdon Street with new red and white signs in order to appease the Poundbakery, round the corner on Church Street.
Paul said: “We’ve got a big shop unit so it has cost us around £1,000 to replace our signs but we just didn’t feel we could risk entering into a legal battle with a big company.
“They objected to us using orange and white.
“But we have been planning our store for months, it is just it took us a while to sort everything out and then it happened that both us and them opened on the same day.
“I don’t really see how they can make a claim on the use of the colours orange and white, but our solicitor warned us it could cost us thousands of pounds if we fought this legal challenge and so at the end of the day we decided to change our signs.
“We have changed them to red and white.”
Lauren, 22, added: “I’ve only recently come out of catering college and this is my first business, so to have to change the signs has been a real set-back because it is costing us a lot of money.
“We chose orange and white because orange is a colour which really stands out, it was nothing to do with Poundbakery.
“However, we’re not going to let it put us off and we’ll carry on with our business.”
In a letter to Mr and Mrs Drury, Mark James, chief operating officer for Sayers the Bakers Ltd, says the “confusingly similar trading style” will mislead members of the public.
He says: “The supply of goods by you under this format and style will lead to the likelihood of confusion on the part of the public.”
He warned his company would seek damages if the issue is not addressed.
Mr James told The Gazette, the aim was to dispel any potential confusion between the stores.
He said: “Poundbakery is all for free enterprise and indeed we encourage competition on the high street.
“This is nothing personal against 99p Takeaway, we just don’t want them to copy our style as we don’t want to mislead or confuse our customers into thinking that the two businesses are related in anyway.”
Poundbakery and Poundcafe has created around 30 new jobs with its new venture which sells food for £1 or less.
The chain, based in the North West, operates around 65 stores under the Poundbakery and Poundcafe trading names.