Papa John’s Names Camp + King Its Creative Agency of Record

Endeavor Global Marketing previously handled the account

Papa John's looks toward Camp + King to help it launch a campaign featuring Shaquille O’Neal.
Illustration: Trent Joaquin; Sources: Getty Images, Camp + King

Papa John’s has once again appointed a new creative agency.

Camp + King has been named creative agency of record for the pizza chain, which has dealt with its share of struggles in recent years.

Last August, Papa John’s named Endeavor Global Marketing its agency of record after parting ways with Laundry Service. Its relationship with Laundry Service ended following a phone call in which Papa John’s founder John Schnatter made a racial slur, according to a Forbes report.

Schnatter, who resigned from his chairman position at Papa John’s following the scandal, later accused Laundry Service of attempting to “extort” the company.

The pizza chain has since tried to salvage its image despite Schnatter’s fall from grace (he once was a staple of the brand’s advertising) and is now looking toward Camp + King to help it launch a fall campaign featuring Shaquille O’Neal, who is a franchisee and board member at the company.

“We wanted a creative team who could showcase Shaquille’s unique, authentic relationship with the Papa John’s brand. We believe Camp + King is the right partner for us,” Karlin Linhardt, who took on the role of Papa John’s global chief marketing officer earlier this year, wrote in a statement. “We were impressed with the energy and insights they brought in their creative concepts and look forward to debuting an exciting new campaign this fall.”

Camp + King will officially start work as Papa John’s creative and strategic agency partner immediately and will work across its brand marketing channels. The account will be led by the agency’s Chicago office, with support from its San Francisco headquarters. Kristin Barbour, managing director of Camp + King’s Chicago office, will lead the business.

“Papa John’s has always been a leader in quality. As a personality who is larger than life, Shaquille sets a natural path for the brand to touch the hearts and minds of its customers. That’s what pizza is all about—bringing people together over fun,” Barbour wrote in a statement.

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