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Kanye West Calls it Quits With Gap

The decorated rapper, producer, and designer is officially divorcing from the retailer two years into their 10-year Yeezy Gap partnership.

Yeezy Gap is over. On Wednesday, Kanye West informed the brand that he’s terminating their partnership and walking away.

According to an exclusive report from The Wall Street Journal, Ye’s lawyers sent a letter to Gap seeking to end the union between the apparel brand and the rapper’s company Yeezy. When the two sides initially inked a 10-year deal in 2020, hopes of a ready-to-wear collection mirroring the Grammy winner’s unconventional style would soon land in the closets of fans worldwide. A little more than a year since the inaugural piece — a blue puffer — dropped, it seems like the remaining items on the Yeezy Gap website will be the final installment of the tumultuous partnership.

The divorce notably does not impact goods manufactured in collaboration with Balenciaga, which are also sold via Gap.

As the Journal notes, Ye’s lawyers alleged that Gap violated the terms of their agreement by not (1) releasing certain apparel or (2) opening Yeezy-themed retail locations as agreed. At least five stores were slated to welcome shoppers by July 31, 2023, but as it stands, Yeezy Gap does not exist in standalone brick-and-mortar Yeezy form. The notice from Ye’s legal team also asserted that not a single one of the 500+ Gap stores worldwide has Yeezy products available for purchase.

In a since-deleted post to his Instagram in August, the 45-year-old expressed specific interest in an Atlanta storefront.

“We are going to open Yeezy stores worldwide. Starting in Atlanta,” Ye said.

The relationship between the rapper/producer and Gap almost seemed inevitable since the beginning of Ye’s career. In a lyric from “Spaceship” off his 2004 debut album,The College Dropout, Ye rapped about working for Gap long before audiences knew him as the chart-topping father of four:

Let’s go back, back to the Gap
Look at my check, wasn’t no scratch
So if I stole, wasn’t my fault
Yeah I stole, never got caught

Ye has not kept his disapproval of Gap to himself even before this apparent breaking point, either. Leveraging his massive social media presence, the Chicago icon has repeatedly chastised the brand, accusing them of leaving him out of key creative decisions. Last month, Ye posted a video addressing Gap executives in which he said, “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.”

Though no further collaborations will drop, Gap still obtains the rights to sell already made Yeezy Gap merchandise before completely distancing itself from the label. With that in mind, the messy situation between Kanye and the company is likely to continue well beyond today’s news.

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