LEWISTON – The battle of the Bobs is over.

Bob Dinan has agreed to stop using “Bob’s Discount” as a name for his stores and in the advertising for his Lewiston-based business. Instead, the stores will be called Price Destroyers.

A recent advertisement in the Sun Journal stated “formerly Bob’s Discount of Maine” in small print below the Price Destroyers name.

Dinan’s lawyer, Jonathan Doolittle, said Monday that Dinan has agreed to comply with terms of an injunction issued by the U.S. District Court that bans his use of “Bob’s Discount.”

Although Dinan used that name for years, Connecticut-based Bob’s Discount Furniture sued over the name after opening a store in southern Maine last summer.

Furniture Bob had trademarked the name in 1996.

The businesses had been locked in a court battle over the name since last winter.

Doolittle said Dinan’s decision to end his challenge over the name “was in the best interest of creditors.”

Dinan filed for bankruptcy protection for his business last month. The hassle over the use of Bob’s Discount was partly blamed for the bankruptcy filing, Doolittle told the court.

“Still to be resolved,” said Doolittle, is any award of damages to furniture Bob in the name dispute.

Bob Keach, furniture Bob’s lawyer, said his client is satisfied that the case has been largely concluded.

“We think it’s the right result,” Keach said.

He said he’ll continue to negotiate on his client’s behalf for damages that, if awarded, would have to be approved by the bankruptcy court.

A hearing on possible damages that had been set for this week has been delayed while those bankruptcy negotiations go forward, Keach said.

“This has never been about the money,” Keach said, although he acknowledged that his client spent a significant sum in his attempt to protect the Bob’s Discount Furniture name.

Doolittle said Dinan was given 30 days to accomplish the name change. During that time, he can use “formerly Bob’s Discount” in his advertising.

The bankruptcy filing is progressing through U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Portland. In the filing, Dinan says he owes more than $935,000 to creditors holding the 20 largest unsecured claims.

Among the secured claims, the U.S. Department of Agriculture had guaranteed a $1.28 million business loan issued in 2000 to allow Dinan to buy a former Coca-Cola plant on Lisbon Street, which he turned into his flagship superstore.

Bob’s Discount once operated more than a half-dozen stores around Maine. Doolittle said Monday that Dinan now operates three – the one on Lisbon Street in Lewiston and stores in Scarborough and Belfast. A fourth store, in Skowhegan, was recently closed.

Dinan didn’t return a call seeking comment.


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