Adidas is being sued by shareholders for its unsuccessful collaboration with Kanye West

Adidas is being sued by shareholders for its unsuccessful collaboration with Kanye West

Accusing the sportswear company of neglecting to inform investors about the antisemitism and “extreme behavior” displayed by the musician Kanye West before their collaboration ended last year, Adidas shareholders launched a class-action complaint against the company.

Shareholders claim in the complaint that Adidas “routinely ignored” his conduct as early as 2018. Senior executives allegedly “ignored serious issues” harming the Yeezy collaboration, including his antisemitic sentiments and problematic public remarks about slavery, according to their allegations.

In a report from that year, Adidas was “generally alluding” to the dangers “rather than stating that the company had actually considered ending the partnership as a result of West’s personal behavior,” the complaint claims. In a TMZ interview at the time, Ye said that choosing to be a slave was a “choice.”

According to the complaint, Adidas knew about his actions and “failed to take meaningful precautionary measures to limit negative financial exposure” in the event that the collaboration ended.

Both former CEO Kasper Rsted and Chief Financial Officer Harm Ohlmeyer of Adidas are listed as defendants.

The rapper, who now goes as Ye, is not named in the complaint. Anyone who purchased an Adidas share between May 3, 2018, when Ye made the sexism remark, and 2023 is covered by the lawsuit.

In response to the complaint, Adidas issued the following statement:

“We outright reject these unfounded claims and will take all necessary measures to vigorously defend ourselves against them,”

Following Ye’s public wearing of a “White Lives Matter” T-shirt in October 2022, Adidas (ADDDF) ended its nearly ten-year partnership with Eest. At a podcast recording a few days later, Ye remarked, “I can say antisemitic s*** and Adidas cannot drop me.”

Ye’s collaboration with Adidas was terminated, according to Adidas, because it “does not tolerate antisemitism and any other sort of hate speech” and because his views were “unacceptable, hateful, and dangerous.” Additionally, the statement claimed that they went against the company’s “values of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect, and fairness.”

The business predicted in February that its inability to sell the designer’s Yeezy clothes and shoes would cost it to lose $1.3 billion in sales this year.

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