Estonia's largest retailer, the Saastumarket discount chain, has asked the patent office to ban German rival Lidl from operating in Estonia under its logo.

According to the Aripaev daily newspaper, the Lidl logo closely resembles the Saastumarket logo. The case is complicated by the fact that Saastumarket has only been in existence for a few years, while Lidl has operated under the same logo for decades. However, Saastumarket, a subsidiary of Finland's Kesko, registered its logo in 1998, while Lidl only applied for international registration of its logo in Estonia earlier this year.

If the patent office finds in favour of the local group, this may well change Lidl's plans to open in Estonia. The patent office will not rule until this autumn.