© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Adidas CEO Bjoern Gulden attends the corporate’s annual information convention in Herzogenaurach, Germany, March 8, 2023. REUTERS/Heiko Becker/File Picture
BERLIN (Reuters) -Adidas CEO Bjorn Gulden has defended the artist previously referred to as Kanye West, saying he did not assume the divisive superstar meant the antisemitic remarks that led to his profitable Yeezy collaboration with the German sportswear large being axed.
Adidas (OTC:) ended its partnership with West, who now goes by the identify Ye, in October 2022 after he sparked outrage along with his erratic posts on social media, together with a tweet by which he known as for “demise con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE”.
Commenting on the scandal which has value Adidas tens of thousands and thousands in misplaced gross sales, Gulden instructed the In Good Firm podcast that Ye had made some statements that weren’t “that good”.
“I do not assume he meant what he stated and I do not assume he is a foul particular person – it simply got here throughout that method,” the CEO stated in an episode that aired on Sept. 13.
Gulden additionally praised Ye as “some of the artistic individuals on the planet … each in music and what I’ll name road tradition”.
An Adidas spokesperson stated ties to Ye would stay severed and there was no change within the firm’s place.
“Ending the partnership was acceptable,” he stated.
Previously on the helm of rival Puma, Gulden was introduced on board as chief government of Adidas in the beginning of 2022 to rebuild the bruised model after coping with the fallout the controversy.
In Could, after reviewing what to do with unsold Yeezy inventory, Gulden introduced that Adidas would promote a few of the merchandise and donate a part of the proceeds to organisations campaigning towards racism and antisemitism.
Robust gross sales of Yeezy shares have helped slender a projected full-year loss on the firm.
Within the podcast, Gulden spoke of the hazards of working with superstar collaborators: “While you work with third events that might occur,” he stated. “It is a part of the sport.”