Papa John’s International is set to enhance its footprint across the United States by opening 50 additional restaurants by the year 2028, following a new agreement with its franchise partner, Nadeem Bajwa, and his organisation, the Bajco Group.

This initiative forms part of a wider strategy to bolster the brand’s presence in pivotal markets, coinciding with the Bajco Group’s ambition to operate 500 Papa Johns establishments. Presently, the group manages in excess of 200.

Bajwa expressed his enthusiasm, stating: “Signing this deal, I am as excited today as I was 20 years ago when I opened my first restaurant.”

The freshly inked deal will facilitate Papa Johns’ expansion across various US regions, including the Midwest, Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Florida.

At the onset of 2024, Papa Johns rolled out its Back to Growth (B2G) Programme, aimed at fostering expansion within North America as a segment of its Back to Better 2.0 strategy.

This programme is dedicated to improving margins at the restaurant level, promising a 600-basis point yearly saving in the profit and loss statements for new outlets during their initial five years of operation.

The scheme is anticipated to significantly enhance the returns on investment for franchise partners, broaden Papa Johns’ scale in strategic locales, and appeal to franchisees with a growth mindset.

Papa Johns’ Chief Restaurant Officer, Joe Sieve, commented on the partnership, saying: “Nadeem’s story is a clear example of how Papa Johns supports its franchisees to build shared success.”

“After starting his Papa Johns journey as a delivery driver, today he is one of the strongest ambassadors for the opportunities Papa Johns presents to its team members and franchisees.”

“Nadeem’s confidence in the brand and expertise in the industry reinforces why he knows there has never been a better time to grow with Papa Johns.”

In a move to innovate its menu offerings, Papa Johns introduced the Crispy Cuppy ‘Roni in the US in March 2023.

Bajwa further shared his perspective on the business, saying, “Papa Johns is not just about business. My team members are my family – and that’s a whole different ballgame.”

“I’m proud that in partnership with Papa Johns, I have been able to pursue my own aspiration, and watch my own team members go from starting their first jobs to becoming leaders.”

The partnership underscores Papa Johns’ commitment to expansion and franchisee success, promising exciting developments for the brand in the Midwest, Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Florida.


Sam Allcock, a seasoned entrepreneur with over two decades of expertise in Food & Drink Editorial.

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