Since the split between Adidas and Kanye West, the company has been left with a mountain of Yeezy sneakers. Sell, give away, or destroy? They don’t have a clue.
What do you do with a disputed $1.3 billion worth of sneakers? German company Adidas is struggling, as it has several thousand Yeezys in its warehouse. Since 2015, she has been marketing it with Kanye West. After West completely derailed with anti-Semitic remarks, insults, and conspiracy theories at the end of last year, Adidas ended the collaboration. But what about those shoes?
It’s not done yet, says CEO Bjorn Golden. He said destroying the shoes would create “sustainability issues”. Putting a new tag on it “not really fair, so not an option”. Giving them to earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria wasn’t an option either, he said, “because they would come back very quickly” on the flea market in the West.
more popular than ever
Not that Adidas won’t get rid of it. Ironically, since the West’s banishment, the search for the Yeezys has become more intense. The CEO of Impossible Kicks, a major online sneaker store, said recently that demand for Yeezys has increased 30 percent since the split with Adidas. The shoes cost between 100 and 400 euros. But now many on the flea market are selling in much larger quantities. And they are now Collector’s items Become.
So it is not surprising that Adidas receives many questions from buyers who would be happy to buy Yeezys. “I’ve probably already had 500 job offers from people who want to buy the stock,” Golden said. But he does not intend to go into it. “It’s not necessarily the right thing to do,” he said. The catch is that Adidas must still pay royalties to West on the sale. For the fallen rapper, the collaboration was financially crucial. The split made him no longer a billionaire.
Stopping to keep going is also painful for Adidas. The Yeezy product line has generated $2 billion in annual revenue for the company, about 10 percent of all sales. That’s why Adidas is already warning that it’s heading for a loss for the first time in decades. It expects to incur a loss of US$730 million in 2023, which according to Golden will be a “transition year”. It’s been 31 years since Adidas was still running losses year on year.
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