Adidas is cutting ties with Kanye West, calling the rapper’s recent remarks and actions “unacceptable, hateful and dangerous.” The German sports brand said it “does not tolerate antisemitism and any other sort of hate speech,” and that it will “terminate the partnership with Ye immediately, end production of Yeezy branded products, and stop all payments to Ye and his companies.” Ending the partnership means Adidas will take a short-term hit of €250 million, the company said.
Adidas announced its partnership with West and his Yeezy brand in 2016, a collaboration that brought in nearly $1.7bn in revenue for Adidas in 2020 alone, according to Bloomberg, and was due to expire in 2026. Last month, Adidas said the partnership was put “under review” after West showed a “White Lives Matter” T-shirt design at Paris Fashion Week.
In the wake of today’s news, American Jewish Committee CEO Ted Deutch shared a statement about the company’s decision, writing: “We welcome this decisive if belated action by Adidas. The company called his comments unacceptable and dangerous in ending West’s most lucrative business partnership. We agree. West has shown no remorse or contrition for his string of antisemitic remarks filled with hate and lies. He believed that as long as the money kept rolling in he could speak with impunity. Other companies that profit from associating with West must also disabuse him of that notion.”