Papa John’s Buyer Backs Out; Tiger Wood’s Consolation Prize; Amazon Coins New Term For Thanksgiving Weekend

The Water Coolest

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Papa Johns


And for that reason, I’m out. Nelson Peltz is perfecting his pullout game as his Trian Fund Management bails out of a potential bid for Papa Johns. But there’s hope yet for the racist pizza baron who still owns 31% of the parlor franchiser: other groups are still in the running for a slice of the company.

Trian which owns a stake in Wendy’s first kicked the tires on Papa John’s in June, somewhere between Papa John Schnatter criticizing the NFL for its handling of player National Anthem protests (and promptly being labeled a bigot) and dropping the “N” word on a conference call (thus confirming the aforementioned bigot label).

The man whose voracious appetite for racial epithets is matched only by his thirst for cheap beer at Louisville basketball games has since stepped down as CEO and chairman and has been relieved of all of marketing duties. Still, Schnatter remains on the board and continues to be a thorn in management’s side.

When he isn’t applauding Clint Eastwood in ‘Gran Torino’, Schnattner is coming up with cockamamie schemes to win back his company by any means necessary (think: adopting a poison pill).

Shares of PJ were down more than 10% on the day on news that Trian was bowing out.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “Papa John’s ’bout to channel its inner Papa Roach.”



Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson squared off in a made-for-premium-cable exhibition match that came about six years and one Thanksgiving evening “car accident” too late. But Tiger wasn’t the only loser. Higher than expected viewership led to technical problems leaving thousands who had paid for The Match without a stream, leading AT&T to pull down the paywall.

AT&T, which was entitled to a share of subscription revenues made when users paid other networks for the stream, said that it wouldn’t be collecting those fees. An estimated 750k viewers tuned in to the the Bleacher Report stream alone, versus the 150k total viewership initially expected. Cord cutters, FTW.

Tiger, who lost out on $9M by finishing second on Friday, got a consolation prize of sorts after losing to a guy who presumably eats dinner at 4 PM and does sh*t like this. Big Cat will be joining Discovery’s GolfTV, which is being marketed as the “Netflix for Golf.”

In return, he’ll receive a cut of streaming revenues. The channel is being developed in conjunction with the PGA tour and will give subscribers a behind the scenes peek into Tiger’s time spent on and off (undoubtedly at Perkins) the course. Discovery is making a full court press into sports programming, having recently secured Olympic rights in Europe for $1.4B.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “I guess when you lose out on $9M, the only option is to snag a side hustle.”





Leave it to Amazon to coin an unofficial-official name for Thanksgiving Weekend. While Black Friday and Cyber Monday usually get all the attention, Bezos has decided that the “Turkey 5” is a better way to describe the web-based mall madness.

Whatever you call it, Amazon kicked ass and took names last weekend, culminating in record sales on Cyber Monday, with customers ordering over 180M items from its online platform over the 5 day period.

And as if physical products weren’t enough, the A to Z provider also announced a new software offering geared towards health care providers. The product’s goal is to analyze medical record data from doctors and hospitals using artificial intelligence and pull out key data points to improve treatment and cut costs. No word on its ability to indicate if you should get that rash checked out.

Water Cooler Talking Point: “If my calculations are correct, by Q2 of 2019 Amazon will be taking the thoughts out of my head and selling them back to me …”





  • You’ve officially been put on notice, GM. Donny Politics is considering cutting subsidies, including those for electric cars, provided to GM following its decision to close factories in Ohio, Michigan, and Maryland. While the president wasn’t specific on which subsidies he’d cut, consumers are eligible for a $7.5k federal tax credit toward the purchase of EVs including the Chevrolet Bolt. GM shares fell as much as 3.8% on the news.


  • And in the least surprising news of the day, Deutsche Bank’s chief regulatory officer and America’s CEO are on the chopping block. Under the supervision of Sylvie Matherat, DB’s chief regulatory officer and a member of its regulatory board, the bank has been an unwitting partner in money laundering and terrorist financing. And America’s CEO Tom Patrick’s tenure has been marred by a failed US Fed stress test. Gary Cohn declined our request for comment on the job openings.


  • You down with CCP? Cyrus Capital Partners has won the bidding war (allegedly held in a court room hallway) to provide Sears with a loan to keep the lights on at the bankrupt retailer. Sears previously struck a deal with Great American Capital Partners for a $350M loan with an interest rate of 11.5% over a benchmark lending rate, but CCP scooped and scored after lowering the borrowers cost by 1.5%.


  • Oral healthcare startup Quip has raised $40M. The funding round follows Quip’s expansion in October from its online-only subscription model for delivering electric toothbrush replacement heads to in-store placement at Target.


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