adidas Will Continue to Sell YEEZY Sneakers in 2023
adidas will continue to release YEEZY sneakers in the future, without the man (or his name) attached.
As the fallout from Kanye West’s cancellation continues, his biggest backer — adidas — has a contingency plan. The Brand With the Three Stripes owns the intellectual property, designs, variations, and new colorways — just not the YEEZY moniker. As such, the brand will be releasing new and old colorways from the catalog under a new name, stripping any reference to their former partner.
Of course, the sneaker community is divided; on one hand, many are denouncing adidas for profiting off Kanye’s genius without paying West an expected $302 Million in royalties accrued. On the other, there are countless sneakers on the market today that have been stripped of their initial endorsers, like the More Uptempo from Nike (Scottie Pippen), and the adidas Crazy 1, which was originally worn by the late Kobe Bryant.
Even if adidas does manage to sell the Yeezy shoes under its own label, some analysts have expressed doubts that it will be able to replicate one thing: the price. Without the YEEZY name attached, it’s likely that the Three Stripes won’t be able to tack on an excessive price tag — perhaps excluding the brand’s early, original designs like the YEEZY 350 v1 “Pirate Black” and the elusive YEEZY 750.
The YEEZY 700 v1 “Wave Runner” is one of the most popular YEEZY sneakers under the adidas umbrella.
In ending the arrangement, adidas absorbed a hit to earnings of up to €250 million for the year. Yeezy has accounted for almost half of Adidas’s total profits, according to analysts.
Still, CFO Ohlmeyer said the profitability of the line is often overstated because its costs include only those directly related to YEEZYproducts, not all the centralized expenses that were shouldered by adidas’s wider business network.