Adidas cuts ties with Ye over antisemitic remarks that caused an uproar

Adidas announced on Tuesday it is severing its partnership with Ye in light of the rap superstar's anti-Semitic comments.
Adidas announced on Tuesday it is severing its partnership with Ye in light of the rap superstar's anti-Semitic comments.
Jonathan Leibson/Getty Images

Adidas said on Tuesday that it is cutting ties with Ye, the artist and fashion designer formerly known as Kanye West, following a series antisemitic comments made in recent weeks.

Ye's nearly decade-long partnership with the German sneaker giant helped make the rap superstar a billionaire and vaulted his Yeezy branded sneakers to a global audience.

Following growing pressure on Adidas to drop Ye, the company announced that it does not tolerate antisemitism or other types of hate speech.

"Ye's recent comments and actions have been unacceptable, hateful and dangerous, and they violate the company's values of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect and fairness," the company said in a statement.

Adidas will no longer produce Yeezy products and stop payments to Ye and his companies, according to Adidas, which estimated that the decision is expected to hit its net income by nearly $250 million in 2022.

The company is the latest to isolate Ye in the wake of a string of incendiary remarks, including that slavery was a choice and a leaked interview between Ye and Fox News host Tucker Carlson, in which he said, "I'd prefer my kids knew Chanukah than Kwanzaa, at least it would come with some financial engineering."

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Adidas had been reviewing its partnership with Ye since he wore a "White Lives Matter" shirt at Paris Fashion Week. The Anti-Defamation League considers the slogan, which has been embraced by white supremacists, a symbol of hate speech.

Twitter and Instagram suspended Ye after making antisemitic posts, including a post on Twitter saying, "Go death con 3 on JEWISH PEOPLE."

In response, Ye announced that he was purchasing the conservative-friendly Twitter knock-off company Parler, in a move that puzzled tech observers. Details of the transaction have yet to be made public.

It is the latest fallout in the business world for Ye since he began unleashing his inflammatory comments. The Balenciaga fashion house has ended its relationship with him and Hollywood talent agency Creative Artists Agency also dumped him.

Production studio MRC said on Monday that it is shelving a finished documentary on Ye upon reviewing his recent antisemitic remarks,

"We cannot support any content that amplifies his platform," company executives said in a statement.

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