Akin Gump Advises Special Committee of Papa John’s Board in $200 Million Strategic Investment from Starboard

(New York) – Papa John’s International, Inc. today announced that it has entered into a securities purchase agreement with Starboard Value LP pursuant to which Starboard is making a $200 million strategic investment in the company with the option, subject to certain limitations, to make an additional $50 million investment through March 29, 2019. A team from Akin Gump advised the special committee of Papa John’s board of directors in the matter.

In connection with the investment, the Papa John’s board of directors is expanding to include two new independent directors, including Jeffrey C. Smith, chief executive officer of Starboard, who has been appointed chairman of the Papa John’s Board, and Anthony M. Sanfilippo, former chairman and chief executive officer of Pinnacle Entertainment, Inc.

In September 2018, Papa John’s began a process to evaluate a wide range of strategic options with the goal of maximizing value for all shareholders and serving the best interest of the company’s stakeholders. In order to execute the strategic review, a special committee comprising the independent directors of the board retained Lazard and BofA Merrill Lynch as its financial advisors and Akin Gump as its legal counsel. After extensive discussions with a wide group of strategic and financial investors, the board concluded that the investment agreement with Starboard was in the best interest of shareholders.

The Akin Gump team advising the special committee is led by corporate partner Daniel Fisher, with significant assistance from partner Gerald Brant. The team includes corporate counsel Kimberly Donnelly Rowe and associates Brittany Harrison and Natasha Biller Burnett.

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is a leading international law firm with more than 900 lawyers in offices throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

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