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Ex-Blockbuster COO Joins Papa John's Pizza

31 Jan, 2005 By: Holly J. Wagner

Nigel Travis

Former Blockbuster Video president and COO Nigel Travis will be the big cheese as president, CEO and a member of the board of directors at Papa John's Pizza.

Travis takes the helm full time April 1 and will report to the board and its chairman and Papa John's founder, John Schnatter.

Over the past couple of years, Papa John's has run a variety of DVD-related promotions and tests, including selling disposable EZ-D discs in the test markets where they were offered and a nationwide promotion giving customers a choice of one of four catalog titles on DVD with the purchase of a large pizza at menu price.

Travis is the second high-level video executive in recent memory to leave the industry for a job at the top of a pizza chain. Former Rentrak chairman Ron Berger joined Figaro's Italian Pizza in 2001.

From 2001 to 2004, Travis was president and COO of Blockbuster, responsible for worldwide store operations, product and merchandising, development, marketing and blockbuster.com. From 1994 to 2001, Travis held various leadership positions at Blockbuster, including: EVP and president, worldwide stores division (1999-2001); EVP and president, worldwide retail operations (1998-99); EVP and president, international operations (1997-98); and SVP, Europe (1994-97).

At the end of 2004, there were 569 company-owned and 2,260 franchised Papa John's restaurants operating in 49 states and 20 international markets. Papa John's also franchises 118 Perfect Pizza restaurants in the United Kingdom.

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