Image Source: XXL Mag
The once-celebrated cooperation between the rapper Kanye West and the retailer Gap is coming to an end. Gap had hoped that the alliance would revitalize its brand.
According to Mr. West, the company violated the terms of the agreement by, among other things, refusing to allow the opening of freestanding stores for his Yeezy clothing line.
When the deal with Ye, a.k.a. Mr. West, was first announced in 2020, it was heralded as possibly revolutionary.
On the other hand, tension was evident.
After a year, the $200 (£173) puffa jacket that was the partnership’s debut product went on sale. Because of this, there have been rumors that Gap is impatient with the slow release of Yeezy products, including a simple sweatshirt that costs $90 and comes in vibrant hues.
On social media, Mr. West has denounced the business numerous times, charging that it has imitated his designs, excluded him from meetings, and refused his pleas to be added to the board.
The struggling retailer Gap declined to comment. This summer, it fired its chief executive after experiencing internal conflicts.
However, although Gap and Yeezy had many same beliefs, “how we operate together to accomplish this vision is not aligned,” according to Mark Breitbard, the company’s president and chief executive, in an email to colleagues that the BBC obtained.
Mr. West tried to resolve the concerns with Gap, but according to Mr. West’s attorney Nicholas Gravante, he had no success. Finally, he informed Gap of Mr. West’s decision to cancel the agreement in a letter that was sent on Mr. West’s behalf. According to him, Gap forced him to end their contract because he had no other option. He continued by saying that Ye would now quickly move forward to make up for the lost time by launching Yeezy retail stores.
Yeezy is known for its sell-out shoes, foam sliders, and boxy, oversized clothing in colors like beige and black. Mr. West, who first gained notoriety as a rapper in the 2000s before moving into fashion, has long had big expectations for the brand.
In 2020, when the 10-year contract with Gap was announced, the firm, which Mr. West owns, was valued at $2.9 billion.
The two businesses have since partnered with luxury clothing brand Balenciaga. The latest products of that collaboration—a collection of black t-shirts, hoodies, and anoraks—created news when they went on sale this summer in what appeared to be huge garbage bags.
According to the letter Mr. West wrote to Gap, that collaboration is governed by a different contract.
A collaboration between Mr. West and Adidas is also present; it will end in 2026.
Gap will eliminate 500 corporate positions in the US and Asia
Gap, a clothing company, will attempt to reduce costs in the face of declining sales by eliminating about 500 office and corporate positions.
After the company’s chief executive left this summer after her recovery efforts failed, the change represents the most recent reorganization of the organization.
The company’s sales have decreased by about 10% from a year earlier. It also owns Old Navy and Banana Republic.
Gap provided evidence of job layoffs at its offices in Asia, New York, and San Francisco but declined to speak to the BBC.
At the start of the year, the company employed about 97,000 individuals, with about 9% of those in corporate positions. So, approximately 5% of the workers would have been laid off.
The article claimed that some of the workforce reductions would result from vacant positions.
It follows the unceremonious end of Gap’s formerly lauded collaboration with Kanye West.
As the US economy has shrunk over the past few months, there are growing worries about its state.
Along with Walmart, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Abercrombie & Fitch, several shops have also announced layoffs.