Published On: Wed, Mar 13th, 2024

Adidas falls to first loss in decades on Kanye West split | City & Business | Finance

Adidas has made its first annual loss in over 30 years due to a combination of flat sales, overstocking, and its split with controversial rapper and designer Kanye West.

The sportswear giant made a net loss of Eur75million (£64.1million) for 2023, compared to a profit of £522.8million the year before. Its revenues dropped 4.8 percent to £18.3billion. Adidas chief executive Bjorn Gulden said: “Although by far not good enough, 2023 ended better than what I had expected at the beginning of the year.”

Adidas ended what was a very lucrative partnership with West in October 2022, over antisemitic and other offensive comments made by the rapper. That left it stuck with billions tied up in stock of his Yeezy range of sports shoes and Adidas said that discontinuing the line cost it £427million in revenues.

Gulden said that overstocking, especially in sports clothing, had hurt its revenues, while the discounting needed to clear its inventory had hit its margins. Adidas’ results were also impacted by negative currency movements and increased product costs.

However, Gulden said that Adidas should see growth accelerating throughout the year, as events like the Olympics and the European football championships boost demand for its gear. “We still have a lot of work to do, but I feel very confident we are on the right track. We will bring Adidas back again,” he said.

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