Papa John’s dismisses KPMG as its auditor, hires EY

Business

FILE PHOTO: The Papa John’s store in Westminster, Colorado, U.S. August 1, 2017. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

(Reuters) – Papa John’s International Inc said on Friday it dismissed KPMG LLP as its financial auditor after the accounting firm pointed out that the pizza chain did not maintain effective internal control over its financial reporting last year. The company has appointed Ernst & Young LLP, which served as its auditor between 1990 and 2017, to handle the accounts for fiscal year ending December 2019, it said in a regulatory filing.

Papa John’s said in May in an amended annual filing that it found some ‘material weaknesses’ in its internal financial reporting controls, but said there was no need to restate financial statement.

The pizza chain, which settled a bitter fight with its founder John Schnatter on control over the chain in March, has been working to fix its brand image after Schnatter reportedly used a racial slur on a media training conference call last year.

Schnatter has cut his stake in Papa John’s after reaching the settlement to about 19% as of May 16, while the company named former basketball star Shaquille O’Neal as a board member, brand ambassador and investor in March as part of an attempt to boost its image.

Reporting by Soundarya J in Bengaluru; Editing by James Emmanuel

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