Sports

Papa John’s is removing founder from ads after he used racial slur

Papa John’s is removing founder from ads after he used racial slur

- More bad news for Papa John's after reports founder John Schnatter used a racial slur. The slur usage came during a call that involved, among others, a marketing agency that was helping "prepare him for an interview to try to fix his public image" in the wake of the NFL's national anthem controversy. While the comments were seemingly meant to denounce racism, several people on the call said they were offended by them, Forbes reported. Schnatter apologized and said he would resign as chairman.

During the call, Schnatter had tried to downplay his National Football League remarks, saying "Colonel Sanders called blacks n*****s" as he complained that the KFC founder never faced public backlash.

The Minnesota Twins have "indefinitely suspended" sales of Papa John's pizza from their activation at Target Field, according to a team spokesman. Given the controversy surrounding Schnatter, U-L president Neeli Bendapudi confirmed Thursday that she and the university are "evaluating" the status of the stadium's naming rights.

Schnatter founded the pizza company in 1984. "Regardless of the context, I apologize", the statement says.

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Laundry Service cut ties with Papa John's shortly after.

The company told the publication it is still working out the exact timing and details as to how it plans to remove Schnatter, who has always been the face of the chain, from advertisements. Papa John's got a taste of that a year ago, when Schnatter stepped down as CEO after blaming disappointing pizza sales on the outcry surrounding football players kneeling during the national anthem. Several people told Friedland how inappropriate and hurtful his use of the word was. The University of Louisville said it will remove the Papa John's name from its football stadium, and that it will rename the John H. Schnatter Center for Free Enterprise at its business college.

Friedland, who is white, later repeated the word with human resources staff trying to address the original incident, Netflix said. The NFL announced it was ending a partnership with the company earlier this year. For the first three months of this year, Papa John's said a key sales figure fell 5.3 percent in North America. 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.


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