John Schnatter—better known to most Americans by his stage name, Papa John—made an audacious claim: that Papa John’s, which has recently seen its sales falling, has experienced the declines because of its relationship with the National Football League. Player protests, Papa John suggested, have inspired “negative consumer sentiment” against the league—and, as a result, against the pizza pies that are officially associated with it.
Papa John’s International, Inc. (PZZA) has entered damage control mode after the board approved a Rights Plan, also known as a poison pill, to keep ousted founder and major shareholder John Schnatter from seizing majority control. The news marks the latest in a series of events that have dropped the fast food giant to a two-year low while marking the biggest scandal to hit the restaurant industry since 2015’s food poisoning outbreak at Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (CMG).
Papa John’s is the United States of Americas 3rd largest Food Providing Company. Papa Johns also provides internationally in more than 15 countries. They provide a variety of food to their customer. Also the Pizza they supply is one of the best in the whole world.
In February, Papa John’s snubbed Schnatter and accepted an investment of up to $250 million from Starboard in exchange for around 10% stake in the company. Starboard’s CEO Jeffrey Smith was named Papa John’s chairman.
The Papa John’s brand and founder came under fire following the release of a tape where Schnatter used a racial slur during sensitivity training on a conference call in May 2018. Schnatter admitted to using the N-word but said his comment was taken out of context and that he was coerced into saying it.
He was completing the training after having already stepped down from his position as CEO because of comments made in November 2017 where he blamed sluggish sales on NFL leadership for failing to quash the national anthem protest issue.
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