Adidas is looking into staff complaints about Kanye West.
The Financial Times is reporting that the company is launching an investigation into allegations of bullying behaviour, among other instances of alleged misconduct, by the rapper.
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The move reportedly comes after German asset manager Union Investment, which owns a 1 percent stake in Adidas, demanded answers about the allegations surrounding West.
“Adidas needs to disclose when the management and the supervisory board was first informed about the internal allegations,” Janne Werning, head of ESG Capital Markets & Stewardship at Union Investment, said.
Earlier this month, Rolling Stone published a report in which ex-employees described the trials of working for West on his Yeezy fashion line, in partnership with Adidas, including describing a “cult-like atmosphere.”
Then, this week, the magazine published a follow-up report alleging that West bullied staff, showed them porn clips at his home, including showing explicit photos and video of then-wife Kim Kardashian.
A number of employees got together to send an open letter to the Adidas CEO and other execs describing “years of verbal abuse, vulgar tirades, and bullying attacks,” and adding, “The most troubling behaviour that should have been flagged by the executive team very early in the partnership is his manipulative and fear-based approach to leading the team, all while trying to assert dominance over Adidas employees in closed rooms.”
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Adidas said in a statement that it is “currently not clear whether the accusations made in an anonymous letter” are true, but that they “take these allegations very seriously and have taken the decision to launch an independent investigation of the matter immediately to address the allegations.”
West and Adidas first partnered in 2013, debuting their first Yeezy collaboration in 2015. The partnership came to an end last month after West made a string of antisemitic comments on social media and in interviews.
The company has since announced that it will continue to sell products from the Yeezy line, but without West’s branding.