Adidas gets $565m in orders for unsold Yeezy shoes

German sportswear company has taken orders for 4 million pairs after antisemitism row, Financial Times report says.

Adidas stopped selling Ye's Yeezy shoe line after the rapper formerly known as Kayne West made a series of antisemitic comments [File: Shannon Stapleton/Reuters]

Adidas received orders worth more than 508 million euros ($565m) for 4 million pairs of unsold Yeezy shoes, better than the company’s “most optimistic forecast”, the Financial Times has reported.

The orders for the first batch would potentially save the German sportswear company from having to take a big writedown on its remaining stock, the newspaper said on Monday.

Adidas stopped selling Yeezy shoes from its defunct partnership with Ye in October after the rapper formerly known as Kanye West made a series of antisemitic comments on social media and in interviews.

Losing the highly profitable line hit first-quarter sales at the German sportswear company by around $440m.

However, robust demand for the unsold sneakers has quelled fears at Adidas’ headquarters that Ye’s antisemitic outbursts and a drop in marketing in the recent past would have made the Yeezy brand too toxic, FT said, citing sources.

Adidas did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Reuters news agency.

The company had said in May it would donate some of the proceeds from the sales to organisations fighting antisemitism and racism.

Discussions over how much will be donated to individual charities are ongoing, the FT reported, adding that the company has chosen five charities in the United States and China as a first step.

“Making donations of more than 8.5 million euros across the five charities has been discussed but no decision has been made,” FT said, citing people familiar with the matter.

The final amount donated from the sales will be much larger as the company is willing to pay a significant share of the profits from the Yeezy inventory, the report said.

Adidas had forecast a loss this year before announcing its intentions to sell leftover Yeezy stocks.

Source: Reuters