You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

11 Better Facts About Papa John's

Mental Floss Logo By Hannah Keyser of Mental Floss | Slide 1 of 11: Neon signage glows at dusk outside a Papa John's International Inc. restaurant in Louisville, Ky.

1. JOHN SCHNATTER LAUNCHED PAPA JOHN’S OUT OF AN INDIANA TAVERN BROOM CLOSET.

After graduating in three years from Ball State University with a business degree, Schnatter moved home to Jeffersonville, Ind. in 1983 to manage Mick's Lounge, a rundown money-pit of a bar co-owned by his father. He quickly revamped the tired tavern and paid off all the outstanding debts. By the following year, his father had been bought out by Bob Ehringer, the other partner in the bar, but the younger Schnatter had an idea for how the institution could be more than just a biker gang pit stop. Tearing down the wall of a broom closet in the back of Mick’s Lounge, he built an 8-by-10-foot kitchen using just $1600 worth of supplies and started making pizzas. After just a year, Schnatter, Ehringer, and a few additional assistants were selling 3000 to 4000 pizzas a week. They quickly bought a storefront next door and by 1987, the pair sold Mick’s to make Papa John’s their full-time business.

© Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

More from Mental Floss

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon