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Lidl is fighting Tesco for £2.35million over allegedly torn off supermarket competitor’s logo

Lidl claims Tesco is using the background of its trademarked logo – a blue square with a yellow circle with a thin red border – to promote club card discounts to its own customers.

Lidl says Tesco is
Lidl says Tesco is “deliberately trying to capitalize on Lidl’s reputation as a ‘discounter'” by using the background of the Lidl logo to advertise its club card price cuts

Rival supermarket giants Lidl and Tesco are expected to spend £2.35million to fight each other in court over claims Tesco ripped off the Lidl logo.

Lidl claims Tesco is using the background of its trademarked logo – a blue square with a yellow circle with a thin red border – to promote club card discounts to its own customers.

The German supermarket says the yellow circle with a red border on a blue background is a “wordless” trademark even without the Lidl name and wants to ban Tesco from using a similar background on its “Clubcard price” signs in its stores.

It says Tesco is “deliberately trying to follow Lidl’s reputation as a ‘discounter'” by using the background of the Lidl logo to promote its club card price cuts.

As part of the evidence supporting its claim, Lidl has presented the London High Court with the results of a poll showing respondents the controversial background without the Lidl name and asking what it was, with “numerous answers” linking to identified Lidl.






Lidl claims Aldi copied their design for its club card logo

Judge Joanna Smith gave Lidl a verdict in a pre-trial skirmish between the two food giants, dismissing Tesco’s bid to invalidate the survey evidence in court.

Explaining the case, the judge said: “In short, Lidl alleges that Tesco’s use of a new logo in its marketing of ‘club card prices’ constitutes an infringement.

“In making the claim, Lidl invokes its trademark rights in two versions of the Lidl logo: a logo that includes the word ‘Lidl’ and a logo without that word, ‘The Wordless Mark.’

“The Wordless Sign is a graphical device consisting of a blue square background with a yellow disc outlined by a thin red line.”

She said Lidl’s lawyers argued that the background of the supermarket logo “can and will be perceived by the UK public as distinctive to the Lidl group of companies”.






Lidl has taken Tesco to court over the trademark dispute

“Essentially, Lidl is saying Tesco is deliberately trying to capitalize on Lidl’s reputation as a ‘discount’ supermarket known for its value.

‘It contends that Tesco’s use of the mark in connection with Tesco’s discount prices aims to and does induce the public to remember Lidl’s shop and the brands, including by suggesting that the prices of the goods on offer by Tesco sold under or in connection with the mark are offered at the same prices or at lower prices than would be available for the same or equivalent goods in Lidl stores,” the judge explained.

In Tesco’s defence, she continued: “Lidl’s use of the Wordless Mark is controversial.

“It focuses specifically on the wordless mark and argues… The wordless mark is a figment of Lidl’s legal imagination and a product of its trademark filing strategy. It doesn’t exist in the real world…Lidl has never used the Wordless Mark and never intended to use it”.

Tesco’s lawyers tried to argue that the survey results should not be included in the evidence at the upcoming trial, saying, among other things, that the way the questions were worded led the way.







Lidl says Tesco is “deliberately trying to capitalize on Lidl’s reputation as a ‘discounter'” by using the background of the Lidl logo to advertise its club card price cuts
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(Getty Images)

During the poll, participants were shown the wordless logo and asked, “What do you think this image is?” and “Now please imagine that this image was used as a trademark of a company… Which company would you expect?”

The judge, who allowed the poll evidence to be included in the trial, said: “If you look in detail at the responses to the poll … you see numerous responses that include ‘Lidl’ or ‘Lidl logo’ or ‘Lidl sign’ or ‘Lidl sign’ or even say ‘Lidl’. It looks like Lidl background”, or “Part of Lidl logo without the words” or “Branding image for Lidl supermarket”.

“This seems to me to be evidence that participants recognize that the Wordless Mark is a logo or trademark.”

The judge went on to say that, even without addressing the question of the contested survey, Tesco’s estimated legal costs “stand at £1,185,976 while Lidl’s costs stand at £1,170,244

“The combined multi-million pound legal costs seem to show how important this trademark dispute is to both parties,” she noted.

The judge also dismissed Tesco’s counterclaim seeking invalidation of some of the disputed Lidl brands on the grounds of bad faith.

The case will be brought to court at a later date.

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/lidl-235million-fight-tesco-over-27223204 Lidl is fighting Tesco for £2.35million over allegedly torn off supermarket competitor's logo

Fry Electronics Team

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