Kanye West Explains Why He Severed His Partnership With Gap

By Tony M. Centeno

September 16, 2022

Kanye West
Photo: Getty Images

Kanye West's high-profile partnership with Gap is officially over after the fashion designer terminated their contract this week.

During an interview with CNBC's Closing Bell on Thursday, September 15, Ye explained why he's severing ties with the clothing brand. While working with the company to cook up his Yeezy Gap collection, the Donda rapper claimed the Gap team took his designs for a shirt and sold it for $20 while pricing his Yeezy products at $200. He also accused the brand of violating the terms of their contract after they failed to sell his products in their namesake stores, and flaked on their promise to help make Yeezy-based brick and mortar stores.

"It was very frustrating," Kanye explained. "It was very disheartening, because I just put everything I had, I put all of my top relationships. Our agenda, it wasn’t aligned.

"Everyone knows that I’m the leader, I’m the king," he added. "A king can’t live in someone else’s castle. A king has to make his own castle."

Ye and Gap announced their "next level" partnership back in 2020. The groundbreaking deal was expected to last for 10 years and rack up billions in sales annually. According to the New York Times, Gap only released two official products in the first 18 months of the deal, a puffer jacket and a sweatshirt, and they were only sold online. After Ye teamed up with Balenciaga back in May, Yeezy Gap Engineered by Balenciaga was born and they created 36 new styles. Their new items actually did appear in the flagship Gap store in Times Squares. The items sold out of industrial size bags, which sparked outrage online.

Ye's legal team sent out its breach-of-contract notice on Thursday morning. upon receiving it, Gap acknowledged the end of their partnership in a note sent out to employees.

“While we share a vision of bringing high-quality, trend-forward, utilitarian design to all people through unique omni experiences with Yeezy Gap, how we work together to deliver this vision is not aligned,” Gap brand president Mark Breitbard wrote. “And we are deciding to wind down the partnership.”

Gap will still the new Yeezy products that were already created in an upcoming collection this fall for the holiday season and into the first half of next year.

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