OPERATIONS

Papa John’s names global operations VP as COO

BY Dan Berthiaume

Indianapolis – Papa John’s International Inc. has promoted senior VP of global operations Steve Ritchie to the position of COO. In addition, the company’s founder, chairman and CEO John Schnatter, will assume the additional role of president, continuing to focus on all aspects of the company’s business while also acting as brand spokesperson.

In his new role, Ritchie will lead all aspects of Papa John’s operations, support and training, and also lead the company’s research and development, quality assurance, PJ Food Service and supply chain functions. As part of the leadership changes, CFO, CAO & treasurer Lance Tucker will assume leadership of Papa John’s information systems functions, including its online ordering platform and the HR function. In their expanded roles, both Ritchie and Tucker will play key roles in the company’s strategic planning process.

Ritchie has served in various capacities of increasing responsibility since joining Papa John’s in 1996, and since 2006 also has served as a franchise owner and operator of multiple units in the company’s Midwest Division.

“Steve is an outstanding operator with a track record of success, and a tremendous asset to our entire system,” said Schnatter. “Steve and I are passionate about the Papa John’s brand, and will work with our global franchise and corporate operators and the rest of this outstanding management team to continue to grow the brand and our quality position around the world.”

As of June 1, Anthony N. (“Tony”) Thompson, who previously served as president and COO of Papa John’s, will assume the position of president and CEO of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc.

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FINANCE

Report: Conflict of interest may endanger Signet-Zale acquisition

BY Dan Berthiaume

Dallas – A previously undisclosed conflict of interest may endanger the proposed $1.4 billion purchase of jewelry retailer Zale Corp. by rival Signet Jewelers. According to the New York Times, Bank of America, which represented Zale in talks with Signet, failed to disclose it had made an unsolicited presentation to Signet in October 2013 where it advised Signet to consider purchasing Zale.

The deal, under which Zale stockholders would receive $21.00 per share in cash, has been unanimously approved by the Zale board of directors. Zale’s investor TIG Advisors LLC has called the deal "grossly unfair," saying the jewelry retailers should be able to get $28.60 a share in cash and stock.

In a statement on May 15, Zale said there is “significant risk and uncertainty” to its own turnaround plan, which was designed as a stretch plan to challenge management if the chain were it to remain independent.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Americans unsure of social media privacy

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – Many Americans are unsure of the level of privacy afforded by social media communications. According to a new survey of 1,141 U.S. adults from research and consulting company YouGov shows that 57% of respondents did not think social media was a good method to send private messages.

In addition, older users are less likely to venture into the realms of private messaging than younger users. Two-thirds (67%) of 18-34-year-olds have used Facebook’s private messages compared to only 41% of those 55 and older.

Older users are also unsure about the status of messages. Twenty-seven percent of those aged 55 and older are not sure when their messages are private and when they are public compared to only 16% of 18-34-year-olds. Many people (50%) assume that any message, even if it starts as a private message, might be made public.

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