Kanye West pulls an Elon Musk, sends Gap a letter terminating Yeezy deal
- Kanye West's lawyers notified Gap on Thursday of his plans to end the deal.
- The retailer will still be able to sell existing Yeezy merchandise, according to the letter.
Kanye West is taking a page out of Elon Musk's book. On Thursday, lawyers for the artist — who now goes by Ye — sent clothing retailer Gap a notice to terminate his partnership, The Wall Street Journal first reported.
The letter, which was viewed by Insider, said that Gap will still be able to sell current Yeezy Gap clothing.
Ye's lawyer, Nicholas Gravante Jr. of Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft, told Insider that Gap "left him no choice but to terminate their agreement."
"Ye had diligently tried to work through these issues with GAP both directly and through counsel," Gravante said. "Ye will now promptly move forward to make up for lost time by opening Yeezy retail stores," he added.
Ye is arguing that Gap failed to make his Yeezy merchandise available in Gap's brick and mortar stores by an agreed-upon deadline, and that the company never opened dedicated Yeezy Gap stores.
A spokesperson for Gap did not respond to a request for comment ahead of publication.
West's termination letter comes after the artist has repeatedly criticized Gap on social media, accusing the company of not allowing him to participate in the creative process and taking credit for his designs.
In August, Ye posted a video clip on Instagram in which the artist told Gap executives: "You have to really give me the position to be Ye and let me do what I'm thinking, or I have to do the thinking somewhere else."
Earlier this year, Musk — a longtime friend of Ye — made a similar move, sending Twitter a termination notice seeking to back out of his $44 billion agreement to buy the company, after repeatedly criticizing it on social media. Since, Twitter has sued the billionaire in an attempt to force him to buy the company at the original purchase price.
The pair have been friends for over a decade. In the past, the Tesla CEO has called Ye his biggest inspiration. In 2020, Ye told Forbes Musk had offered to support him in his attempt to run for president.
Gap only started selling its first Yeezy products in 2021 under a 10-year deal with Ye. The brand's first product sold out within hours, selling more in a single day than any other product in the Gap's history.
West has yet to terminate his partnerships with Balenciaga or Adidas. Though, he has also been critical of Adidas on social media and said he plans not to renew the contract once it expires. Earlier this week, the artist said on Instagram that he wants to open his own Yeezy stores starting in Atlanta, Georgia.
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