#PapaJohns is trying to revive its image after people canceled the pizza chain after the company’s founder, #JohnSchnatter, who was asked to step down, criticized the #NFL protests and reportedly used a racial slur during a media training session.

Their secret weapon? None other than #ShaquilleOneal. The company figures not only is the retired #NBA Hall of Famer good at business, but he’ll also be good at selling their pizzas, according to @newyorkdailynews.

Shaq is reportedly signing on to become part of the company’s board of directors, as well as an investor. The new face of the pizza chain hopes to not only make a good business move, but to fix their image from all the racist controversy.

If you think they’re just pulling Shaq for namesake, think again. Shaq has an established track record as an investor in the food industry. The man owns a Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, and previously owned 27 Five Guys Burgers and Fries restaurants.

He’s also the founder and owner of Big Chicken, a fried chicken joint in Las Vegas, and ‘Shaquille’s,’ which is a fine dining restaurant in Los Angeles.

Shaq is personally investing in nine Papa John’s restaurants in the Atlanta area.

“In addition to his business acumen, Shaquille understands how to build lasting connections with consumers and energize employees,” said Papa John’s president and CEO Steve Ritchie. “I look forward to working with him as a board member and brand partner to advance the many initiatives we are pursuing across the organization to create even greater success for Papa John’s and our stakeholders.”

Shaq also has experience as a brand ambassador–I’m sure you’ve seen him in those ‘The General’ auto insurance commercials since 2016–a bag that he’s secured until at least 2021.

“I have truly enjoyed the high-quality Papa John’s product for years and am excited to be able to help Papa John’s raise their game to new heights,” O’Neal said in a press release. “I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Board and using my experience in business and community to build on the progress being made at Papa John’s…Papa John’s is building a better culture, and I want to be a part of improving the Company from the inside out.”

Roommates, is Shaq enough to make you start eating Papa John’s again? Or did you even stop in the first place? Let us know what you think!

TSR STAFF: Christina C! @cdelafresh


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