Adidas, the global sportswear company, has reported mounting losses after ending its Yeezy partnership with rapper Kanye West. The decision to sever the partnership came after West spoke publicly about his disagreements with the company’s production and marketing strategies.
Adidas reported a net loss of €264 million ($314 million) for the first quarter of 2023, a significant drop from the €62 million ($74 million) profit reported in the same period last year. The company attributed the loss to increased marketing and production expenses associated with the launch of their new products.
Adidas CEO Kasper Rorsted spoke about the company’s decision to end their partnership with West during a recent press conference.
“We have parted ways with Kanye West because we could not align on our respective visions for the future,” Rorsted said. “While we appreciate the creative talent that Kanye has, we don’t believe that his approach to production and marketing is the right fit for our brand.”
West himself has not commented publicly on the end of the partnership, but sources close to the rapper say that he was disappointed with the decision.
“This was a difficult decision for Kanye,” said one source. “He has a lot of creative ideas, and he felt that Adidas was not fully embracing them.”
Despite the setback, Adidas remains optimistic about their future prospects, citing strong sales in other product lines and increased demand for sportswear as the world emerges from lockdowns.
“We are confident that we can weather this storm and come out stronger on the other side,” Rorsted said. “Our commitment to innovation and excellence remains as strong as ever, and we will continue to bring exciting new products to the market for our customers to enjoy.”