After abruptly ending a federal court case aimed at freezing $75 million held by Kanye West’s Yeezy brand, Adidas decided to put Yeezy shoes back on sale on Wednesday.
Adidas CEO Bjørn Gulden announced in May, that the company would be selling a portion of the remaining inventory and might donate some to social organizations. The developments came months after Adidas decided to end its partnership with American rapper Ye, formerly known as Kanye West in October 2022.
Adidas’ decision to cut ties with Kanye West came after the rapper made some anti-Semitism remarks, leading to an uproar over social media platforms. Kanye West is known for his controversies in the United States and has made objectionable statements multiple times.
Adidas-Yeezy was a collaboration between Kanye West and the German sportswear company Adidas. The partnership was established in April 2015 and offered sneakers in limited edition colorways, as well as shirts, jackets, track pants, socks, slides, lingerie, and slippers.
Before Adidas, Kanye West had collaborated with other big players in the sportswear industry, Nike, and together released Air Yeezy in 2009. The partnership ended in 2013 and then Kanye West decided to collaborate with Adidas in 2015 and signed an agreement lasting till 2026.
Even before the official break-up, everything was not fine between Kanye West and Adidas as the rapper expressed his displeasure with the sportswear management several times on social media platforms. Kanye West accused the Adidas management of keeping him out of the meetings and taking decisions without his approval.
Officially, Adidas management never commented on any sort of issues in the collaboration, but sources revealed that the management was not very fond of Kanye West.
Decision to cut ties
The final blow for the Adidas and Kanye West collaboration came in October 2022, when the American rapper expressed some anti-Semitic views from his Twitter account.
“I’m a bit sleepy tonight but when I wake up I’m going death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE,” Kanye West said in a tweet, in a reference to US military readiness code known as DEFCON.
The tweet brought a furor over social media and all popular brands including Balenciaga, Gap, and JPMorgan Chase announced to cut their ties with Kanye West. After a while, Adidas also announced its decision to terminate the contract.
The decision of Adidas is expensive for both the company and Kanye West and currently, the sportswear brand has around $1.3 billion worth of unsold Yeezy shoes in stock. The termination of ties has cost the company $655 million in sales for the last three months of 2022, which widened the company’s loss to around $550 million.
After the termination of ties with Adidas, Kanye West saw a significant hit in his net worth which came down from $2 billion to $400 million, according to Forbes.
The brand claims to be the sole owner of all design rights to existing products. Adidas has argued that it was Kanye West’s offensive conduct to led to the breakdown of contract.
The dropping of the case is hardly the end of the legal tussle between Adidas and Kanye West and the parties are expected to battle it out in a private arbitration case.