Adidas will start selling some of the shoes from its defunct Yeezy partnership with rapper Kanye West at the end of May, the company said on Friday, and plans to donate the proceeds to selected organisations combating racism and hate.
The news fleshes out plans initially outlined last week and follows Adidas‘ move to cut ties with West over anti-Semitic comments made last year, leaving the German sporting goods maker with Yeezy brand shoes worth 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion).
The initial sale of some of the shoes marks the first time the products have been available to customers since Adidas terminated the partnership in October 2022.
The value of Yeezy shoes in the resale market has rocketed since Adidas stopped producing them, with some models more than doubling in price
While the sale announced on Friday could be followed by subsequent releases of Yeezy inventory, no decisions have been made on timing, Adidas said, adding the move had no immediate impact on the group’s 2023 outlook.
“We believe this is the best solution as it respects the created designs and the produced shoes, it works for our people, resolves an inventory problem, and will have a positive impact in our communities,” CEO Bjoern Gulden said.
“There is no place in sport or society for hate of any kind and we remain committed to fighting against it.”
Among others, planned recipients of the proceeds include the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and the Philonise & Keeta Floyd Institute for Social Change, Adidas said.