The day after the election a small business owner in Nevada followed through on his threat and fired 22 employees because Obama won. Even though the 2013 tax code hasn’t been written yet he was sure it will suck, and between that and the looming prospect of Obamacare he started handing out pink slips (being sure to complain about his “Hispanic” workers who voted Obama).
Before the election Papa John’s CEO John Schnatter, a big Romney supporter, was one of the highest profile CEOs threatening layoffs and pizza price hikes (god forbid!) if Obama won. He doubled down after the election, like the Vegas man saying he’d start making layoffs and reducing hours at Papa John’s locations rather than having to provide healthcare for people working more than 30 hours per week.
Forbes ran the numbers on this, and here’s what they found: Last year Papa John’s took in $1.2 billion in revenue. Schattner has said he expects providing healthcare to raise his operating expenses $5-8 million. Based on last year’s operating expenses that’s an increase of 0.4% to 0.7%—a cost that could be met by raising the price of pizza 3.4 to 4.6 cents per pie.
Rather than do that, Schattner plans to cut the hours of workers working more than 30 hours to avoid providing them healthcare.
Oh, and one more thing about the $5-8 million dollar cost of providing healthcare to his employees: In september he announced a promotion to give away 2 million pizzas, an equivalent of $24 million to $32 million. So clearly the company can take a $32 million dollar hit on a promotion without having to penalize workers. But he’d rather keep workers without healthcare than spend a few million (or spend nothing and raise the price of pizza less than a nickel).
What does Schattner get for this? He get his very own Papa John’s Appreciation Day. “We just wanted to stand with Papa John’s because it is under attack,” a supporter tells Fox News. It’s like the sequel to Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day, but this time the company is being appreciated for valuing its employees’ health less than a gimmicky promotion. Papa John’s Appreciation Day even has its own Facebook page.
If you want to thank a giant publicly traded company for slapping its hard-working employees for no reason, head out to Papa John’s on Friday. For everyone else, there’s Pizza Hut.