Kanye West 'bullied Adidas staff and showed them porn and nudes of Kim Kardashian'

23 November 2022, 15:47 | Updated: 23 November 2022, 15:58

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West comp
Kanye West is accused of showing an intimate video Kim Kardashian to Yeezy staff. Picture: Alamy/Getty Images. Picture: Getty Images/Alamy

By James Hockaday

Kanye West played mind games with Adidas and Yeezy staff and showed them porn to "catch them off guard", according to an open letter from former employees.

The rapper is alleged to have shown intimate pictures of his then-wife Kim Kardashian in job interviews, and showed an explicit video of her to his team members during meetings, as well as his own sex tapes.

Since 2015, Mr West, also known as Ye, had a deal with Adidas to design sneakers and other clothing items under his Yeezy brand, but he was abruptly cut loose in October over his recent anti-Semitic remarks.

Now, Yeezy staffers have been speaking out about the performer’s alleged bullying tactics and power-plays while working at the company.

A shocking report in Rolling Stone magazine tells how Mr West played pornography to staffers during meetings and asking for their opinion of it.

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Kanye West
Kanye West has been dropped by a swathe of brands over his recent troubling remarks. Picture: Alamy. Picture: Alamy

One former senior employee recalled how an Adidas executive told how an Adidas executive warned: “Hey, just so you know, there’s gonna be this whole porn-reference thing.”

A second executive reportedly added: “It’s gonna catch you off guard the first time. I think he does it to catch people off guard.”

Mr West, who has previously admitted being a porn addict, allegedly played explicit videos in the background on numerous occasions to ‘keep him focused’ during meetings, despite making members of staff uncomfortable.

In 2017, during a meltdown in a factory sample room in Qinyuan, China, the raper, unhappy with the prototypes of his latest Yeezy sneakers, allegedly approached a female employee, looked down at his foot, stared up at the woman, and said: “I want you to make me a shoe I can f**k.”

An open letter from former members of the Yeezy team claims Adidas was aware of Mr West’s “problematic behaviour” but “turned their moral compass off”.

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Kim Kardashian
Kim Kardashian married Mr West in 2014 and filed for divorce in 2021. Picture: Alamy. Picture: Alamy

It claims the performer “exploded at women in the room with offensive remarks, and would resort to sexually disturbing references when providing design feedback”, urging Adidas to address the “toxic and chaotic environment” the rapper created.

The letter also claims that Mr West would “use his power to violate you in a quiet way and threaten your role and existence within the team.

It adds: “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.”

Former employees previously told Rolling Stone how Mr West created a "cult-like atmosphere" in the workplace and reportedly fired one employee for asking to listen to rival rapper Drake.

Both Mr West and Ms Kardashian did not respond to the Rolling Stone’s requests for comment. An Adidas spokesperson said: “Adidas does not tolerate hate speech and offensive behavior and therefore has terminated the Adidas Yeezy partnership.

"We have been and continue to be actively engaged in conversations with our employees about the events that lead [sic] to our decision to end the partnership.”

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Kanye West
Kanye West has previously admitted to being a porn addict. Picture: Alamy. Picture: Alamy

In October, a number of brands who collaborated with Mr West decided to cut ties after the rapper made a series of anti-Semitic remarks and other problematic gestures.

He caused a stir after displaying his “White Lives Matter” t-shirts at Paris Fashion Week in September, and was accused of undermining and hurting the black community.

His Twitter account was temporarily locked in early October after he threatened to go “death con 3” on Jewish people.

The rapper, who previously has said he has bipolar disorder, was later filmed telling photographers that he was “misdiagnosed” by a Jewish doctor, suggesting they may have wanted to kill him.

His outbursts have resulted in him being dropped by a slew of companies, including Adidas, Balenciaga, Creative Artists Agency, Foot Locker, Gap, Cohen Clair Lans Greifer Thorpe & Rottenstreich, MRC, and JPMorgan Chase.

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