Papa John's Cooks Up 18.4% Growth in September Comp Sales

North American systemwide comparable sales at Papa John's rise 23.8% in the three months through September.
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Papa John's  (PZZA) - Get Report said Tuesday that systemwide comparable North American sales jumped 18.4% in September as the pizza chain operator racked up six consecutive months of double-digit comp sales growth.

Domestic company-owned comparable sales rose 14.3% in September.

For the three months ended Sept. 27, North American systemwide comparable sales rose 23.8%.

System-wide comparable sales growth for international restaurants rose 23.3% for September and 20.6% for the third quarter.

The company said it has been providing a monthly business update during the coronavirus due to the uncertainty created by the pandemic.

Roughly 90 of the company's 2,100 international franchised stores are closed and these are primarily in Latin America and Europe. Almost all of the traditional restaurants in North America remain open and fully operational, the company said.

A number of non-traditional restaurants located in universities and stadiums are temporarily closed, Papa John's said, but these locations are not material to the company’s revenues and operating results.

"We remain confident that our innovation pipeline, marketing and technology platforms, and strong operations will continue to support strong results during, and after, the pandemic," president and CEO Rob Lynch said in a statement.

Papa John's is one of many food retailers that have added jobs during the coronavirus pandemic as homebound consumers turned to ordering and delivery.

Last week, the company said that it planned to open a new headquarters in the Metro Atlanta area, moving some functions from its Louisville, Ky., headquarters.

Menu innovation, marketing, customer experience, human resources, diversity, equity and inclusion, communications, and development functions will be located in the new headquarters, the company said.

IT, supply chain, and legal teams will stay in Louisville. Papa John’s also has a headquarters outside London, where its international operations are managed.