Shaquille O’Neal Becomes a Papa John’s Franchisee
Shaquille O’Neal, the former NBA superstar, has become a Papa John’s franchisee by joining the board of directors of the company. In March of 2019, Shaq invested $8.25 million in nine Papa John’s franchises in Atlanta, making him the “new face” of the Papa John’s brand.
By becoming a franchisee, Shaquille O’Neal now owns a portion of Papa John’s restaurants, but how much of the company does he actually own?
According to a report by Forbes, Shaq owns 155,000 shares of Papa John’s International Inc., which is estimated to be worth around $8.25 million, the same amount he invested to purchase the nine franchise locations in Atlanta.
While 155,000 shares may seem like a lot, it actually only represents around 1.4% ownership in the company. In comparison, Papa John’s founder John Schnatter still owns approximately 24% of the company, despite his resignation as chairman in 2018.
Despite only owning a small portion of the company, Shaquille O’Neal’s involvement in Papa John’s has still had a significant impact. In addition to his investment and board position, Shaq has been heavily involved in the marketing and branding of the company.
Since becoming a Papa John’s franchisee, Shaq has appeared in multiple commercials and advertisements for the company. He has also developed the “Shaq-eroni” pizza, which features extra cheese and pepperoni and is available at all Papa John’s locations.
Furthermore, Shaq has used his social media influence to help promote the brand. He has shared photos and videos of himself visiting Papa John’s locations, interacting with customers and employees, and promoting the company’s products.
Overall, while Shaquille O’Neal may only own a small portion of Papa John’s, his involvement in the company has been valuable. His marketing and branding efforts have helped to improve the image of the company, and his investment has shown his commitment to the brand’s success.
How Much of Papa John’s Does Shaq Own?
Shaquille O’Neal, popularly known as Shaq, announced in March 2019 that he had become a member of the Papa John’s Board of Directors and would also become an investor in nine Papa John’s franchises in Atlanta. Shaq’s investment in Papa John’s came at a time when the pizza chain was looking to revive its brand after dealing with scandals related to its founder’s comments. Shaq’s involvement with the company has undoubtedly contributed to the resurgence of Papa John’s.
But how much of Papa John’s does Shaq own? Shaq’s initial investment in Papa John’s comprised a $4.125 million stake in the company, which amounted to about 30,000 shares. This investment makes Shaq the second-largest individual shareholder in Papa John’s.
According to a report from ESPN, Shaq’s investment represents a 1.4% stake in Papa John’s. This figure is not insignificant considering that the company has a market capitalization of over $1 billion. Shaq’s investment in the company has propelled Papa John’s to become one of the top-performing restaurant stocks of 2019.
Why Did Shaq Invest in Papa John’s?
Shaq’s reasons for investing in Papa John’s are straightforward. During an interview with CNBC, Shaq stated that he likes the company’s product and thinks Papa John’s has great potential for growth. Shaq’s investment in the company came at a time when Papa John’s was attempting to distance itself from the controversies involving its founder. This public perception shift made it a perfect time for Shaq to invest in the brand.
Furthermore, Shaq’s investment in Papa John’s aligns with his long-standing interest in the food industry. Shaq already owns a number of other franchise locations of restaurants such as Auntie Anne’s, Buffalo Wild Wings, and Five Guys, among others.
Shaq’s Impact on Papa John’s
Since joining Papa John’s, Shaq has taken up a number of roles within the company. In addition to his directorship, Shaq also serves as the face of Papa John’s commercials. His celebrity status has undoubtedly helped to restore the brand’s image and contributed to the company’s overall success. During a call with investors in 2019, Papa John’s CEO, Steve Ritchie, stated that Shaq’s “ability to connect and engage with a broad, multicultural audience is unparalleled.”
Shaq’s involvement has also led to new menu innovations. In January 2020, the pizza chain unveiled a new pizza that was co-developed by Shaq. The “Papa John’s Shaq-a-Roni” pizza was described as “an extra-large pizza, topped with extra cheese, extra pepperoni, and extra-sliced Shaq-sized pieces.” Part of the proceeds from the sales of the pizza would be donated to Papa John’s Foundation, a charity aimed at supporting communities.
Overall, Shaq’s investment in Papa John’s has been a win-win situation for the basketball star and the pizza chain. Shaq’s impact on the company has been tremendous, and he has undoubtedly played a significant role in the company’s resurgence.
How Much of Papa John’s Does Shaq Own?
As of March 2021, former NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal owns 9 Papa John’s franchise locations in the Atlanta area. However, he is also a company director and brand ambassador for the pizza chain, which has had a significant impact on its brand and sales.
Shaq’s Impact on Papa John’s Brand
When Shaq became a spokesman for Papa John’s in March 2019, it was a much-needed boost for the pizza chain’s image. Papa John’s had been struggling with negative publicity and declining sales due to controversial comments made by its founder and former CEO, John Schnatter. Shaq’s larger-than-life personality and positive reputation helped to shift the public’s perception of the company and its values. He is widely seen as an ambassador for diversity, inclusion, and equality, which aligns with Papa John’s efforts to rebrand and reshape its image after Schnatter’s toxic behavior tarnished its reputation.
Shaq’s involvement in the brand has been more than just a marketing campaign. He has been vocal about his role in helping to improve the company culture and has reportedly been working closely with corporate leadership to promote diversity and positive change.
Shaq’s Impact on Papa John’s Sales
Since Shaq’s partnership with Papa John’s began, the company’s sales have seen a steady increase. In Q3 of 2019, Papa John’s reported a 5.3 percent increase in same-store sales in North America, which was the first time in two years that the company had experienced positive same-store sales. The company credited Shaq’s marketing campaign as a factor in its sales growth, stating that his “fun-loving and authentic personality” resonated with customers.
Papa John’s has continued to see positive sales numbers in the years following Shaq’s partnership. In 2020, the company reported a 23.8 percent increase in digital sales, which was due in part to the pandemic-driven shift toward online ordering. Shaq’s continued involvement in the brand has helped to keep Papa John’s relevant and appealing to customers, despite the challenges of a competitive market and a global pandemic.
In conclusion, Shaquille O’Neal’s ownership of nine Papa John’s locations in Atlanta is just one part of his overall impact on the brand. As a director and brand ambassador, Shaq has helped to improve Papa John’s image and reputation, promote positive change within the company, and boost sales through effective marketing campaigns. Though the full extent of Shaq’s involvement in Papa John’s remains to be seen, it is clear that his partnership with the company has been a significant factor in its recent successes.
The Future of Shaq’s Partnership with Papa John’s
Shaquille O’Neal, better known as Shaq, is a legendary basketball player who joined Papa John’s as a board member and brand ambassador in 2019. As part of his partnership, Shaq invested $840,000 in nine Papa John’s franchises, which translated to 30% ownership.
When Shaq first joined the Papa John’s team, the brand was already struggling to regain its reputation following the resignation of its founder, John Schnatter, amid controversy over his use of a racial slur. The company’s sales had been declining, and it was losing its market share to its competitors such as Domino’s and Pizza Hut.
However, Shaq’s involvement has brought a fresh perspective and energy to Papa John’s. His celebrity status and business acumen have been crucial in helping the brand regain its footing. Shaq has been instrumental in launching new campaigns, branding initiatives, and expanding Papa John’s footprint in different parts of the country.
So far, Shaq’s partnership with Papa John’s has been successful. The company reports that its sales and shares have been steadily improving since Shaq’s involvement. But what does the future hold for Shaq’s partnership with Papa John’s? Let’s take a look at some possible outcomes.
1. Expansion of Franchises
One possible future for Shaq’s partnership with Papa John’s is the expansion of franchises. Shaq invests in nine Papa John’s stores, but there is no limit to how many franchises he can acquire. With Shaq’s experience in investing and business, it is possible that he will acquire more franchises and expand them in different regions.
Moreover, Papa John’s has been emphasizing its expansion strategy lately, with announcements of new stores opening and piloting new store formats. As one of the brand’s investors, Shaq could play a significant role in this expansion plan and lead franchise development initiatives.
2. Creation of New Products
Another possibility is that Shaq and Papa John’s will collaborate to create new products. Papa John’s has already launched the “Shaq-a-Roni” pizza, which features extra pepperoni and extra cheese. The pizza is inspired by Shaq’s love for pepperoni pizza, and according to Papa John’s, it has been a hit with customers.
With Shaq’s engaging personality and love for food, it is possible that he will continue to support product development initiatives and promote new offers, either as a brand ambassador or a franchise owner.
3. Increased Marketing Efforts
Shaq has already played an active role in Papa John’s marketing campaigns and initiatives. For example, he has appeared in several TV spots, social media posts, and even a Shaq-sized pizza box. Shaq has also been instrumental in developing campaigns that highlight Papa John’s commitment to quality, innovation, and diversity.
As Papa John’s continues to compete with other pizza brands, marketing will be a crucial factor in the brand’s success. Therefore, it is possible that Shaq will increase his involvement in marketing efforts and even bring in new marketing strategies that appeal to diverse audiences.
4. Innovation in Technology
With the pandemic, there has been a significant shift in consumer behavior, with more people ordering food online, and for delivery or pickup. As a result, there has been an increased need for innovation in technology to make the ordering process more accessible, efficient and personalized.
As one of the stakeholders in Papa John’s, Shaq has an opportunity to influence the brand’s technological advancements. For example, he could support initiatives that improve online ordering and delivery or invest in start-ups that focus on improving the food technology experience.
5. Social Impact Initiatives
Shaq has been vocal about his commitment to social impact, especially in his hometown of Newark, New Jersey. He has supported several social initiatives, such as mentoring programs, sports programs, and charities.
It is possible that Shaq will continue to support social impact initiatives in partnership with Papa John’s. For example, he could be an advocate for diversity and inclusion and work toward making Papa John’s a more inclusive workplace. He could also launch charity initiatives and donate a portion of the franchise’s proceeds to support social causes.
Shaquille O’Neal’s partnership with Papa John’s has been a positive development for the brand. His involvement has helped Papa John’s improve its reputation, expand its franchises, and launch new products and initiatives. The future of the partnership is bright, and we can look forward to more exciting projects from Shaq and Papa John’s in the near future!