Adidas Faces Lawsuit Over Kanye West’s Problematic Behavior: Investors Accuse Sportswear Giant of Negligence and Failures

Adidas faces lawsuit from investors who allege that the sportswear giant knew about Kanye West’s problematic behavior years before they ended their collaboration.

Adidas Faces Lawsuit Over Kanye West's Problematic Behavior
Adidas Faces Lawsuit Adidas Faces Lawsuit Adidas Faces Lawsuit Adidas Faces Lawsuit

In addition, the investors claim that Adidas did not limit its financial losses and failed to take precautionary measures to minimize its exposure.

Adidas terminated its partnership with the designer and rapper known as Ye last year following antisemitic comments he made.

The company “outright rejects these unfounded claims” and added it “will take all necessary measures to defend ourselves against them vigorously.”

West is not a party to the lawsuit, but he designed a successful line of trainers under the Yeezy brand for Adidas.

Adidas acknowledged that it might lose up to €700m (£619m) after being left with hundreds of millions of euros worth of unsold Yeezy products.

However, investors who filed the lawsuit in the US against the company on Friday claim that Adidas knew about other questionable behavior by West.

They allege that former chief executive Kasper Rorsted and other management discussed it. In addition, the Wall Street Journal published details of an alleged meeting in 2018 where Adidas discussed the West.

The report claimed that senior executives spoke about mitigating the risk of staff interacting with him and the company possibly cutting ties with the rapper.

Since Adidas parted ways with West in October last year, it has launched an investigation after reports he created a “toxic environment” at the company.

Rolling Stone magazine published excepts of an open letter by Adidas staff members who claimed bosses were aware of West’s “problematic behavior” but “turned their moral compass off.”

In response, Adidas said it was unclear whether the accusations made in the anonymous letter were true. However, it said it takes these allegations seriously and has launched an independent investigation to address them.

West’s collaboration with Adidas ended last year after he made antisemitic comments. In October last year, he held a show at Paris Fashion Week where models wore clothing with the slogan “White Lives Matter.”

The Anti-Defamation League said it is “a white supremacist phrase that originated in early 2015 as a racist response to the Black Lives Matter movement”. Later that month, West suspended his Instagram and Twitter accounts after making antisemitic remarks.

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