Adidas executives reportedly raised concerns about their relationship with Kanye West years ago

As far back as four years ago, Adidas’ CEO and other senior executives at the company reportedly discussed concerns about continuing their relationship with Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, which they feared could implode at any moment.

During a 2018 presentation to members of the company’s board of directors, a group of employees, including CEO Kasper Rorsted, outlined the risks employees face from interacting with Ye, according to The Wall Street Journal. The presentation featured mitigation strategies for Adidas’ relationship with Ye, including cutting ties with the creator of Yeezy.

But instead of cutting ties with Ye, executives had business unit heads share various suggestions with the rapper so Adidas could keep the Yeezy partnership, which accounted for an estimated 8% of annual sales.

Ye and Adidas executives attended a meeting in September where he called for more money and control over the Yeezy brand. Ye also allegedly showed executives a clip from an adult video and accused them of stealing his designs.

ADIDAS TERMINATES PARTNERSHIP WITH KANYE WEST DUE TO ANTI-SEMITIC COMMENTS

Adidas CEO and other senior executives at the company discussed concerns about continuing their relationship with Ye, formerly Kanye West, which they feared could implode at any moment four years ago. (REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File Photo/Steve Eichner/WWD/Penske Media via Getty Images)

The company agreed to some of Yes’s demands after that meeting, including the ability to sell Yeezy shoes directly to consumers, ownership of future designs, and assurances that he would receive a cut in sales of Yeezy look-alike products . The offer would extend the partnership between the two sides until at least 2026. However, Ye wasn’t satisfied as he was aiming for as much as $3 billion.

And in October, Adidas ended its relationship with Ye in response to several anti-Semitic remarks by the rapper.

Adidas said in a statement that it does not tolerate anti-Semitism or any other form of hate speech.

Ye West wears black

During a 2018 presentation to members of the company’s board of directors, a group of employees, including CEO Kasper Rorsted, explained the risks employees face from interacting with Ye. (Edward Berthelot/GC Images/Getty Images)

“Yes’ recent comments and actions have been unacceptable, hateful and dangerous, and violate the company’s values ​​of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect and fairness,” the statement said.

Earlier this month, Adidas announced it was opening an investigation into Yes’s behavior after the company received an anonymous letter alleging years of misconduct towards Adidas employees and that management ignored his behavior.

KANYE WEST’S EPISODE OF “THE SHOP” WILL NOT AIR AFTER RAPPER USED “MORE HATE SPEECH”: PRODUCER

A photo of the Adidas logo on a shield

Adidas ended its relationship with Ye in response to several anti-Semitic comments West made on Twitter. (REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File Photo/Reuters Photos)

GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE

The company’s alleged behavior and attempts to stick with Yeezy despite this are not new, according to former and current Adidas and Yeezy employees. Some employees said they raised concerns about Yes’s behavior back in 2018 to senior Adidas executives and HR managers.

“It is currently not clear whether the allegations made in an anonymous letter are true,” Adidas said in a statement on Thursday. “However, we take these allegations very seriously and have made the decision to immediately launch an independent investigation into the matter to resolve the allegations.”

The Wall Street Journal contributed to this report.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *