Shares of the pizza chain were up more than 5.2 percent in premarket trading Thursday — recovering all of the $96.2 million in market value the company lost after Schnatter’s comments were reported by Forbes the day before.
Papa John’s said in a statement late Wednesday night that it will appoint a new chairman in the coming weeks. Olivia Kirtley, the board’s lead independent director, will run the board until a permanent replacement is found, it added.
News of Schnatter’s resignation came shortly after Major League Baseball indefinitely suspended its Papa Slam promotion — a campaign that both sides have collaborated on since 2016.
“News reports attributing the use of inappropriate and hurtful language to me during a media training session regarding race are true,” Schnatter said Wednesday in a statement released by Papa John’s. “Regardless of the context, I apologize. Simply stated, racism has no place in our society.”