Here's an interesting twist. Also, one has to wonder if any established, respected brand would consider doing business with Papa John's at the moment.
— Kristen Hawley
Papa John’s International Inc. climbed after a report that the company’s controversial founder John Schnatter, under fire for the use of a racial slur, held recent talks with Wendy’s Co. about a potential merger.
Investors cheered the news on the hopes it signals that there could be interest from potential acquirers for the troubled company. Shares rose as much as 7 percent in New York. They’ve lost about a third of their value in the past year.
A spokesman for Schnatter declined to comment. A spokesman for the company declined to comment. A spokeswoman for Wendy’s declined to comment.
Schnatter, 56, has been facing backlash after a Forbes report last week said he used a racist term during a training session with media agency Laundry Service. While Schnatter has acknowledged using the slur, he said it was in the context of a training exercise and that he isn’t a racist.
It was the latest of a string of gaffes from the chain’s founder, who already left the chief executive officer role over critical comments about the National Football League’s national-anthem controversy. Schnatter remains on the company’s board and still owns nearly 30 percent of Papa John’s stock.
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