Why big companies are cancelling partnership with Kanye West

Kanye West./COURTESY

American rapper, record producer and fashion designer Ye formerly known as Kanye West has been the center of controversies in recent weeks.

The rapper’s series of remarks in different platforms has made him lose partnership with giant companies he was collaborating with and even lost his billionaire status.

But what did he exactly say or do to make him on the L side?

It all started in France during Paris Fashion week where he together with other black models wore t-shirts with the phrase ‘White Lives Matter’,a hate speech term used by white supremacists to counter the Black Lives Matter movement fighting against police brutality.

The t-shirt had a photo of Pope John Paul II on the front. This incident created a storm on social media with celebrities and key figures quickly condemning the move.

The 45 year old rapper had posted comments on Instagram that were considered by many to be “anti-Jewish,” and the social media platform restricted his account as a violation of company’s rules and guidelines.

He then took to twitter where he aired his grievances with Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg over the suspension.

He posted saying; “I’m a bit sleepy tonight but when I wake up I’m going death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE. The funny thing is I actually can’t be Anti Semitic because black people are actually Jew also You guys have toyed with me and tried to black ball anyone whoever opposes your agenda.”

Despite the tweet being taken down by twitter ‘death con 3’ was a likely reference to US military term Defcon 3, a defence readiness condition alert system used by US armed forces and West was accused of misusing the term to “declare metaphorical war on Jewish people.” 

In a podcast episode the rapper boasted that he could make hateful remarks without any repercussions as well as insinuating Gorge Floyd was not killed by the police but rather a drug overdose.

Sportswear maker Adidas, fashion brand Balenciaga, Vogue, The Gap have cut ties with the 24 times Grammy winner and consequently making him lose the billionaire status.

Forbes magazine said it had valued Ye’s share of the Adidas deal at $1.5bn (Ksh.181.7) The end of that partnership deal means his net worth shrank to $400m equivalent to sh.48.4 billion.

His financial streams now come from real estate, liquid cash, his music catalog and a less than 5% stake in his ex-wife Kim Kardashian’s skims brand.