Papa John’s CEO Steve Richie Talks Starboard Value Investment

Papa John’s CEO Steve Richie just dished about the company’s recent success on CNBC. The CEO has been working overtime to aid the third largest pizza franchise in making a comeback. Part of his efforts have been to embrace cultural appreciation. NBA super-star Shaquille O’Neal’s presence as a new board member have helped as well. Now, Starboard Value is investing a whopping $200 million into the pizza biz. Richie cannot be any happier and let David Faber of CNBC know all about it.

“This investment grants us the ability focus on the future,” Richie stated, “And that future is all about changing our culture.” Richie began at Papa John’s at its lowest level. He started working as a delivery driver and climbed up from there. All he knows is the pizza business and he has a challenge before him since taking the reins. Starboard Value’s $200 million contribution is definitely a game changer for Papa John’s, and the company believes in its investment. In fact, three new directors come with the investment to aid John’s in planning its future. Richie thinks it’s fun.

“We are investing in technology, people, and product,” Richie says, “Our inner economics need work but our product is still the best.” Proving that Richie went on to reveal that Papa John’s will unleash six new specialty pizzas on its menu. Richie and company have been taste-testing the pizzas with Starboard Value directors in order to perfect their new offerings. The expansion also incorporates a newly refurbished loyalty program.

Papa John’s was actually leading the field up to a few years ago. It was the first pizza company to initiate online ordering and even started the first loyalty program. Richie is confident that they will get back on the horse soon. All he seems to care about is backing a product he firmly believes in and letting the rest fall into place.