Papa John's to pull founder from marketing


Papa John's to pull founder from marketing

University President Neeli Bendapudi announced change for Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on Friday, as the pizza chain said it is removing Schnatter's image from its marketing.

On Wednesday, Papa John's founder John Schnatter quit his chairman of the board role after it was reported that he used the N-word during a conference call in May. McConnell, an avid Louisville football fan, said "there's no place for racism in this country".

The University of Louisville's football stadium has a new name. Since then, the fallout has been swift: Schnatter resigned from the school's board of trustees and as Papa John's chairman. The pizza chain said there are no plans to change its name. "As a result, we have indefinitely suspended our relationship with Papa John's".

Schnatter blamed Papa John's disappointing sales last fall on protests by NFL players during the national anthem, causing a backlash and leading to his resignation as company CEO in January. The company's shares, which had fallen almost 5 percent Wednesday, rebounded 11 percent Thursday after the company announced Schnatter's resignation as chairman.

"Mr. Schnatter's derogatory and insensitive comments are not at all reflective of the values of our organization", the Marlins said in their statement.

"The name may be salvageable with some sort of "new generation taking over" messages, but we don't really know", said Cathy Dunkin, a lecturer in management at Washington University in St. Louis' Olin Business School. Take, for example, one from the summer of 2016, when Schnatter's usual red Papa John's shirt was replaced with a "Ghostbusters" jumpsuit in a 30-second TV spot and on a movie-themed pizza box.

Bendapudi did not comment on Schnatter's reaction to the stadium being renamed.

Every time the Orioles scored five runs or more in a game this season, customers received a 50 percent discount the following day on regularly-priced Papa John's menu items ordered online by using a promo code.

Schnatter had used the slur during a media training exercise, Forbes said. Schnatter released a statement Wednesday apologizing, which said in part, "Regardless of the context, I apologize".

Papa John's, based in Louisville, Kentucky, began operations in 1984 and had more than 5,200 locations globally. For the first three months of this year, the chain said a key sales figure fell 5.3 percent in North America.