LOUISVILLE, Ky.—Papa John's International, Inc. announced its domestic systemwide comparable sales for the five weeks ended Dec. 28, 2003, decreased 2.5 percent (composed of a 1.2 percent decrease at company-owned units and a 2.9 percent decrease at franchise units).

According to a news release, domestic systemwide comparable sales for the quarter ended Dec. 28 increased 0.7 percent (composed of a 2.4 percent increase at company-owned units and a 0.2 percent increase at franchise units).

Based on the most recent full quarter of industry data available (September, October and November 2003), Papa John's said transactions in the U.S. pizza category declined approximately 4 percent, representing the seventh consecutive quarter of flat or declining transaction results.

Systemwide international sales increased 16.2 percent for December and 7.9 percent for the quarter, on a constant U.S. dollar basis, over the comparable periods last year.

As of Dec. 28, there were 2,790 Papa John's units (570 company-owned and 2,220 franchised) operating in 49 states and 15 international markets. Papa John's also franchises 135 Perfect Pizza units in the United Kingdom.

* The headline to this story was corrected on Jan. 9, 2004. It originally said Papa John's 4Q sales were off 4 percent. That decline reflected sales decreases for the fourth quarter in the entire U.S. pizza category, not a specific 4Q decline for Papa John's.—Ed.

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