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

“Regardless of the context I apologize,” Papa John’s founder John Schnatter said Wednesday

“Regardless of the context I apologize,” Papa John’s founder John Schnatter said Wednesday

The Washington Nationals have severed ties with Papa John's days after founder John Schnatter resigned as chairman of the company's board.

Top executives made a decision to remove Schnatter but details are still being worked out.

Many of Papa John's recent ads have not featured Schnatter. The person was not aware of any plans to change the pizza chain's name. Schnatter apologized and said he would resign as chairman.

Papa John's has a license agreement with Schnatter "related to the use of certain intellectual property related to his name, likeness and image, our business and brand may be harmed if Mr. Schnatter's services were not available to the Company or the reputation of Mr. Schnatter were negatively impacted, including by social media or otherwise", it said in 2017 annual filing.

Schnatter remains on the board, and is still the company's largest shareholder with almost 30 percent of the stock. He appears on its pizza boxes, in some of its TV ads and in the store's interiors. It was still there as of Friday morning.

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Some in the UofL community, including current football players, called on Bendapudi to change the stadium's name after Schnatter's comment.

"Five years from now, they might be able to start bringing him back".

Louisville President Neeli Bendapudi addressed a letter to the "U of L Family" on Friday that declared U of L would rename the football stadium and remove the name of Papa John's founder John Schnatter from the school's Center for Free Enterprise and its College of Business, effective immediately. He apologized to her, adding that he didn't want to be a "distraction", she said.

Schnatter also allegedly stated that, in his home state of in, "people used to drag African-Americans from trucks until they died", reportedly intending for the sentiment to convey his opposition to racism.

Major League Baseball also suspended its "Papa Slam" promotion with the company - which provided fans a 40 percent discount on online orders the day after a grand slam was hit during a major league game - Yahoo Sports reported on Wednesday. For the first three months of this year, the chain said a key sales figure fell 5.3 per cent in North America.

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