Sportswear brand Adidas intends to sell Yeezy shoes and clothes it produced with US rapper Kanye West and donate a portion of the proceeds to charity, as per a report in CBS News. The company had announced that it was ending production of Yeezy branded products with “immediate effect” towards the end of October after the rapper, now known as Ye, made anti-semitic remarks on his social media handles.
As per the outlet, CEO Bjorn Gulden said this week that the brand considered burning all the merchandise but decided against it. “Burning is not the solution,” he said on Thursday during the Adidas annual shareholders’ meeting.
“What we are trying to do now over time is to sell parts of this inventory and donate money to the organisations that are helping us and that were also hurt by Kanye’s statements,” he added.
As per BBC, Adidas has Yeezy sneakers in storage that are valued at roughly 1.2 billion euros. In order to avoid the products reaching the market in an indirect manner, the company opted to sell part of the goods rather than donate them, according to Mr Gulden.
It is to be noted that Adidas warned last week that failing to “repurpose” its unsold Yeezy stock will reduce its operational earnings by 500 million euros this year. The company believes that some of those losses may be reduced through a sale. According to the partnership’s conditions, the rapper Ye will also be entitled to some profits.
Investors launched a class action lawsuit against Adidas last month, saying officials delayed ending the alliance with Ye despite knowing about his questionable behaviour for years. According to the lawsuit, which is on behalf of investors who purchased Adidas stock between May 2018 and February 2023, the company boasted about its dedication to having an equitable workplace in the personnel risk section of Adidas’ 2018 annual report “while failing to discuss how it routinely ignored extreme behaviour from Kanye West.” The rapper is not listed as a defendant in the lawsuit.