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Adidas sells another batch of Yeezy sneakers left over from Kanye West breakup

Adidas has said it had started a third sale of the Yeezy sneakers it was left with after severing ties with Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West.

The company has accompanied the sales with donations to groups fighting antisemitism and other forms of hate.

Adidas broke up with Ye in October 2022 over his antisemitic and other offensive comments. It has sought a way to responsibly dispose of 1.2 billion euros worth of unsold shoes.

The company said it plans to release the remaining Yeezy inventory in the course of this year.

Adidas said the latest release started Monday on digital platforms. The range available will be products from 2022 including what Adidas said were some of its most popular designs.

Last year Adidas earned 750 million euros ($813 million) in revenue from two Yeezy releases, down from 1.2 billion euros in 2022.

The company spent months looking for a solution. Burning the shoes was ruled out, restitching them to hide the brand rejected as dishonest, and giving them away could have created a resale market. Instead it decided to sell them and donate part of the proceeds.

A sign advertises Yeezy shoes made by Adidas at Kickclusive, a sneaker resale store, in Paramus

(Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

Adidas has made donations to the Anti-Defamation League and the Philonise & Keeta Floyd Institute for Social Change, run by social justice advocate Philonise Floyd, the brother of George Floyd.

Shoes sold directly by Adidas in North America included blue square pins established by Robert Kraft’s Foundation to Combat Anti-Semitism as a symbol of solidarity in rejecting antisemitism.

At Adidas’s annual general meeting in Fuerth, Germany, on in May last year, its chief executive Bjorn Gulden said destroying Yeezy stock is not the answer.

Kanye West attends the Balenciaga Womenswear Spring/Summer 2023 show as part of Paris Fasion Week

(Getty Images For Balenciaga)

In a translated version of his comments provided by Adidas, Gulden said: “For the last four months we have been trying to find solutions on what to do with it.

“Burning the goods is not the solution.

“Now, talking to all the NGOs, and a lot of organisations that have been hurt by Kanye, they all say, no, that’s not the solution.

“What we are trying to do now over time is to sell parts of this inventory and donate money to the organisations that are helping us and that were also hurt by Kanye’s statements.

“When we will do that and how we will do that is not clear yet, but we are working on those things.

“But I think burning the products is not the point.

“And we will update you as soon as that decision is made.”

The company previously condemned West’s antisemitic comments as “unacceptable, hateful and dangerous”.

Ye was banned from Twitter and Instagram in late 2022 over a number of antisemitic comments, which also saw him dropped from brand partnerships with both Adidas and Balenciaga. CAA, one of the biggest celebrity talent agencies in the US, also cut ties with the musician.

In the same year, Ye appeared on right-wing commentator Alex Jones’ show Infowars, during which he made the shocking declaration that he “likes Hitler”.

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