Papa John’s founder, John Schnatter, is speaking out a year after he resigned after using the N-word on a conference call.
In a recent interview, Schnatter, 58, claimed the person who shared the phone call was a “farce,” slamming the company and the taste of its pizza.
“I’ve had over 40 pizzas in the last 30 days, and it’s not the same pizza,” he said. “It’s not the same product. It just doesn’t taste as good. The way they’re making the pizza is just not fundamental to what makes a Papa John’s pizza.”
Schnatter continued, saying:
“I feel so negative and pessimistic about the company that I’ve sold a lot of stock.”
And when it comes to the call that led to his resignation, Schnatter said in the interview how he “didn’t say anything that was racist,” despite quoting the KFC Colonel Sanders on the call.
He also claimed the incident was just a way for insiders at the company to push him out.
“They stole the company, and now they’ve destroyed the company,” Schnatter said.
“They’ve hurt people that wake up every day and make this company great,” he said. “I mean, it’s a miserable place over there … They’re losing all of their good people. The key to this business is good people.”
“The day of reckoning will come,” Schnatter continued. “The record will be straight.”
Papa John’s back in July 2018 announced the resignation of Schattner as chairman of the board after he used a racial slur during a May 2018 call between company executives and a marketing agency called Laundry Service.
Schnatter was reportedly asked how he would distance himself from racist groups online while on the call.
“Colonel Sanders called blacks n—s,” Schnatter allegedly said on the call, referring to the KFC founder.
At the time, Schnatter did not deny the allegations. His statement is as follows:
“News reports attributing the use of inappropriate and hurtful language to me during a media training session regarding race are true,” he said.
“Regardless of the context, I apologize. Simply stated, racism has no place in our society.”
In November of 2017, Schnatter faced more backlash after he blamed Papa John’s sales decline on the NFL national anthem protested while on an earnings call, stepping down as CEO of the company in December of 2017.