Adidas may write-off the rest of its Yeezy stock following a pause on off-loading the sneakers. That’s bad news for Kanye West, whose net worth has plunged even as new sneaker designs pop up. Here are the latest financial stats on Ye.
Adidas estimates that it has around $320 million in unsold Yeezy shoes that it may decide to write off instead of doing a third drop of the shoes. That’s extremely bad news for Kanye West, who receives a healthy cut of every Yeezy sold, even if his deal with Adidas is terminated.
Kanye West net worth went from an estimated $2 billion in 2021 to sub-$1 billion after his Adidas deal fell apart (the Adidas brand deal was estimated to account for $1.5 billion of that $2 billion figure.) Universal Music Group and The Gap also terminated their deals.
With the fallout and lack of continued sales (of which Ye earns 15%), his net worth has fallen to an estimated $400 million—meaning the Adidas deal and other terminations have cost him his billionaire status. Ye was estimated to have made as much a $220 million annually from his Adidas partnership, which would have extended through 2026.
Kanye West Net Worth Snapshot: The Sharp Decline
Mid-2021: $2+ billion. Net worth peaks with Adidas, The Gap, other lucrative partnerships and increasing music IP valuations.
October 25th, 2022: Drops below $2 billion. Universal Music Group, The Gap end their deals with Kanye.
April 9th, 2023. Drops below $1 billion. Kanye West officially dropped from Forbes billionaire list after Adidas terminates its partnership.
December 2023: Kanye West net worth sinks to $400 million as Adidas suspends plans to liquidate remaining Yeezy stock, thereby eliminating a major payday for the artist.
Adidas cut ties with the rapper in October 2022 over antisemitic remarks he made online. Following that decision, the German sportswear giant decided to unload the remaining stock in two releases, selling through 750 million euros of product in 2023. It donated a portion of proceeds from those sales to the Anti-Defamation League and the Philonise & Keeta Floyd Institute for Social Change.
During its outlook posted for earnings this quarter, it considered a possible write-off of the remaining Yeezy stock, narrowing its expected loss to 100 million euros. Part of Adidas decision not to release the remaining stock comes after rising antisemitism in the breakout of the Israel-Hamas war after attacks on October 7 killed hundreds at a music festival.
In discussions about the remaining shoe inventory, Adidas suggested it would be “written off.. if that will happen or not is something that we evaluate all the time, so there’s currently no decision on what we’ll do. That is financially the worst case and it is a possibility. Currently there is no decision.”
“We of course hope we can do more drops next year and we can get more value out of it and donate the proceeds, but right now financially we haven’t made a decision and that’s why the outlook is the way it is.” Adidas CEO Bjorn Gulden says the shoes are stored in many different locations and there are many scenarios in which they could be released.