Adidas will launch an investigation into allegations of misconduct against Kanye West, with whom the company had a partnership that ended in October.
In a statement released Thursday, Adidas said it is “currently unclear whether the allegations in the anonymous letter are true. However, we take these allegations very seriously and have decided to immediately launch an independent investigation into the matter to resolve the allegations.”
The statement follows a Rolling Stone article that said Adidas board members ignored inappropriate behavior by the rapper, who legally changed his name to Ye, in partnership with his Yeezy brand.
Rolling Stone reported that it obtained a letter sent Tuesday by former high-ranking Yeezy employees to members of the executive board about the “toxic and chaotic environment that Kanye West has created.” The letter went on to say: “This type of response from a brand partner is one that Adidas employees should never be exposed to and adidas management should never tolerate.
Adidas ended its partnership with Ye after he made a series of anti-Semitic remarks in recent months. In late October, West addressed anti-Semitic comments — as well as what he said about George Floyd and Black Lives Matter — in a rambling 16-minute video shared by WmgLab Records on YouTube, seemingly shot at some point after Adidas ended its business relationship. with him.
“I think Adidas felt they were all ganging up on me, that they had the right to just take my designs,” West told the small crowd.
West did not apologize for his anti-Semitic remarks in the video, but appeared to be trying to distance himself from any “hate group.”
“I have no affiliation with any hate group,” West said as he closed his remarks with a prayer. “If any hatred befalls any Jewish person, it is not connected (gestures to himself) because I demand that they all walk in love.”
Adidas has worked with West since 2013, when the company signed his brand away from rival Nike. In 2016, Adidas expanded its relationship with the rapper, calling it “the most significant partnership ever between a non-athlete and an athletic brand”.
West currently does not have an attorney or publicist representing him in the matter.
– CNN’s Dan Heching contributed to this report