Adidas To Sell Leftover Yeezy Stock After Ending Deal With Kanye West
Sportswear brand Adidas wants to sell Yeezy shoes and apparel it produced with American rapper Kanye West and donate a portion of the proceeds to charity, CBS News reports. The company announced at the end of October that it would stop production of Yeezy-branded products with “immediate effect” after the rapper, now known as Ye, posted anti-Semitic comments on his social media handles.
According to the outlet, CEO Bjorn Gulden said this week that he considered burning all of the items but decided against it. “Burning is not the answer,” Adidas said Thursday during its annual shareholder meeting.
“What we’re trying to do now over time is sell some of this inventory and donate the money to organizations that help us, and that has been affected by Kanye’s statements,” he added.
According to the BBC, Adidas has a stockpile of Yeezy sneakers that are worth an estimated €1.2 billion. In order to avoid the products reaching the market indirectly, according to Mr Gulden, the company decided to sell a portion of the products rather than donate them.
Adidas warned last week that failure to “recycle” its unsold Yeezy stock could cut its operating income by 500 million euros this year. The company believes some of those losses can be offset by sales. According to the terms of the partnership, rapper Ye will own some of the profits.
Investors launched a class-action lawsuit against Adidas last month, saying officials delayed ending the alliance with Ye despite years of questionable behavior.
According to the lawsuit on behalf of investors who bought Adidas stock between May 2018 and February 2023, the company boasted of its commitment to an equal workplace in the employee risk section of Adidas’ 2018 annual report “failed to discuss how. It routinely ignored serious behavior from Kanye West.” The rapper is not listed as a defendant in the case.