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Papa John’s founder John Schnatter
In the latest development of the current crisis facing Papa John’s, ousted founder John Schnatter on Monday made a slew of accusations against Chief Executive Officer Steve Ritchie for causing the company’s poor performance.
Schnatter resigned as the company’s chairman last month after he admitted and apologized for using the N-word during a May conference call. The incident came to light after Forbes magazine reported it in July.
Schnatter remains a board member.
Papa John’s shares lost $96.2 million in market value after the Forbes article was published. Major League Baseball subsequently stopped its Papa Slam promotion — a campaign on which it had collaborated with Papa John’s since 2016. The Miami Marlins also announced that the team was suspending its relationship and all promotions with the pizza chain.
Schnatter was closely tied with the brand’s image and was featured prominently on the company’s pizza boxes. But Papa John’s has since said it would remove the founder from its promotions.
Schnatter has not gone down without a fight. He sued the pizza chain for documents relating to his ouster as chairman and accused the board of acting negligently or staging a possible “coup,” according to a lawsuit filed in Delaware.
—CNBC’s Sarah Whitten contributed reporting.
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