Adidas is investigating numerous claims of misconduct in the workplace that have been made against Kanye West by former employees. These allegations were brought to light through an anonymous letter, which not only accuses Adidas of knowing about the situation and doing nothing but also paints a picture of an overall toxic work environment.
Adidas announced last month that it would cut ties with rapper Kanye West over his recent offensive and antisemitic remarks. Ye was previously suspended from Instagram and Twitter because of his remarks but has been back on social media this month. The company’s net income this year will drop by 250 million due to the decision.
More than two dozen ex-Yeezy and employees of Adidas allege that Kanye West fostered a toxic work environment by displaying sexual images and videos in team meetings, making derogatory comments, and bullying those who worked for him. Many have come forward to report this incident, but all have requested anonymity. The letter claimed that the company knew about this issue but did nothing to stop it or protect its employees.
“We are not yet certain if the claims made in an anonymous letter are accurate,” Claudia Lange, head of media relations for Adidas, explained in a statement. “However, we take these suggestions very seriously and have thus decided to initiate an independent investigation of the matter immediately.” She further stated that the company is not yet ready to share more details about the investigation.
Neither Ye’s last known musical collaborators nor his personal representatives responded to requests for comment on this matter via email.
On Friday, Adidas commented on previous remarks made by Ye that caused the company to end its partnership with him. They said, “The sportswear company Adidas will not tolerate any kind of hate speech and offensive behavior,” and they ended the Yeezy partnership.
Lange said in a statement that Adidas would continue to pursue its commitment to promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace. “We have spoken with our employees at length about the incidents that forced us to end the partnership, and those conversations will continue. They have our full support as we work through the termination details.”
The company, who appointed a new CEO this month in an expedited timeline for a power transfer, said they own the rights to the product designs except for the brand name of the product- Yeezy. And they are also planning what to do with the current inventory.