June 29, 2017
So Long, Subway Jared: Sandwich Chain Rebrands Itself Amid Controversy

Since Subway Jared is now gone, the sandwich chain is desperately rebranding itself in the midst of a child porn investigation.

Federal investigators were seen raiding the home of Subway spokesperson Jared Fogle on Monday, July 8. Now it looks like Subway will need to rebrand itself or go through an image rehaul to revive its sluggish sales.

Jared Fogle is currently under investigation by FBI officials. No charges have been filed against him, and officials have not spoken out about the investigation. In the midst of the child porn investigation, Subway has cut ties with Jared Fogle and has halted its latest ad campaign.

In a recent statement, Subway said that both the company and Jared Fogle "mutually agreed to suspend their relationship" due to the child porn probe.

Subway also removed any advertisements that featured Jared Fogle. The company also removed images of Subway Jared on its website, including pages telling his story and his fight against childhood obesity.

The new ad features Jared as a family man who's still keeping weight off with his dedicated diet of Subway sandwiches. The animated commercial shows a cartoon version of Jared as a father bringing his wife, Katie McLaughlin, and their two children to a nearby Subway sandwich shop. Jared was also previously interviewed by Bloomberg Businessweek on June 17 about his success after Subway. In the interview, he said that he's dedicated to his Subway diet.

"My life has evolved. The next step in my story is I have a family, and a lot of parents can relate to that. You want to be a role model for your children, and obviously one of the most important things is maintaining the weight, keeping it off."
Jared Fogle also made a recent appearance at the premier of Disney's Inside Out and was scheduled to feature in the upcoming Sharknado 3, but was immediately pulled. An NBCUniversal Spokesperson said on Wednesday, July 8, that Fogle's cameo would not appear in the film.

Now people are wondering if Subway and Jared Fogle can repair their damaged relationship. Karen Post, author of Brand Turnaround: How Brands Gone Bad Returned to Glory, says that Fogle's career will suffer more than Subway's unclear future.

"In the court of public opinion, there are some scandals that people tend to forgive, but not child pornography."
She also admitted that Subway did right by suspending its relationship with Fogle, as new information develops.
"This is a little icky, but until everyone learns more, it's not fair to jump to conclusions."
For over 15 years, Jared Fogle has been known as "Subway Jared." In 1999, he claimed that he lost 245 pounds by eating Subway sandwiches. Jared's feature in the college newspaper, the Indiana Daily Student, made its way to Men's Health magazine and onto Subway's desk.
What are your thoughts on Subway Jared? Do you think his career is over? Do you think it was right for Subway to suspend their relationship with him? And do you think the sandwich chain needs an image rehaul? Share your thoughts below in the comments section.

[Image: Tim Boyle/Getty Images]