The Yeezy Effect: A Look at Adidas Before and After Kanye West


We all would agree that Kanye West is a polarizing figure—but most won’t be able to ignore what his arrival in 2013 has done for the Adidas brand.

“Kanyeezy you did it again!” Kanye West Makes Good on His Promise

Adidas Originals, the lifestyle business into which the Yeezy collection is grouped, saw its sales grow 45 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016. The latest Yeezy release was Oct. 15th of 2016. Coincidence? We’re talking almost double its sales from quarter 3 to quarter 4.

Adidas company had this to say of the Yeezy clothing and footwear line:

“Not only [have the Yeezy’s] sold out instantly but [they have] also played a major role in propelling Adidas to the most popular sneaker brand on Instagram in 2015.”
— Adidas on the Kanye West effect

Wait, what? Instagram??? Did he say Instagram? I know, I know… But according to the data, Instagram referrals result in considerably higher revenue than other social networks and social clout is a good barometer of consumer opinion of a brand and their product. Maybe some charts will help you with a little perspective.


Yes, I know the self-proclaimed “Tupac of product” can’t be given all the credit for Adidas’ recent successes. Many would also attribute the success to the increase in lifestyle fashion and the new generation of “fitsters” who are taking sportswear out of the gym and onto the street and making it fashionable. Despite this being the case, one can’t ignore the positive correlation between Mr. West’s arrival to Adidas and the brand’s steady market rise.

Although Adidas still has a lot of catching up to do in terms of catching Nike’s ridiculous $30 B in annual sales. Adidas with the help of Kanye West are slowly making up ground—so let’s just say this story is to be continued…

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