High-end handbag brand Radley has clashed with Poundworld, claiming the budget retailer has been ripping off its designs.
In a filing at the High Court, Radley has claimed Poundworld, which is owned by the private equity firm TPG, is attempting to "ride on the coat-tails" of its success by selling a bag with 12 dog images on it (Radley's bags feature a dog logo).
Radley said its "luxurious image" was being tarnished by the look-alike bags going on sale in Poundworld's comparatively down-market shops. Radley's leather handbags typically retail at between £100 and £200.
A Poundworld spokesperson said: "Questions over design often arise within retail, the matter is in the hands of our legal team who are currently discussing an amicable solution with Radley."
Several high-end brands are being more protective of their image in the increasingly competitive retail market, seeking to make sure shoppers are willing to pay high prices for their goods.
Diesel, the luxury jeansmaker from Italy, has ended its relationship with outlets that offer its trousers at cut-down prices, giving up on more than £90m worth of wholesale sales in a bid to maintain its brand identity.