Kanye West has inked a deal with clothing label Gap. Under West's creative guidance, the new line will include "modern, elevated basics for men, women and kids at accessible price points".
The statement released additionally noted that the partnership brings West's relationship to Gap "full circle", saying the billionaire entrepreneur, rapper, designer and most recently gospel singer worked at a Chicago Gap store as a teenager.
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"#WESTDAYEVER," 43-year-old West himself tweeted, with a logo combining "YZY" with Gap's signature navy blue and white.
It is a collaboration West has long waxed poetic on: "One of my dreams was to be the head creative director of the Gap," he told New York Magazine in 2015.
"I'd like to be the Steve Jobs of the Gap."
The deal marries Gap's American clothing classics with the rapper's Yeezy designs. "Yeezy Gap" will be introduced in the first half of 2021
Yeezy will receive royalties and potential equity based on meeting sales targets. Yeezy's sneaker side alone was valued as much as US$3 billion (RM12.9 billion) last year, according to Bloomberg.
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The 21-time Grammy winner West waded into the design world in 2007, when he launched his first line of high-end sneakers in collaboration with Nike.
He severed ties with the American sports apparel company in 2013, saying his share of revenues was insufficient.
He then launched a partnership with German sportswear giant Adidas and saw sales explode, hitting some US$1.5 billion (RM6.4 billion) in 2019, according to Forbes.
The celebrity entrepreneur has presented eight Yeezy clothing collections, with financing from Adidas.
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Latching onto the star power of West is a major marketing score for Gap, who has seen sales consistently decline since 2013 and has scrambled to remain relevant in a rapidly shifting ready-to-wear landscape.
Gap – which posted hundreds of millions in losses in 2020's first quarter and has flailed in recent years – saw its shares surge upon news of the partnership with one of entertainment's most bankable celebrities, up some 30 percent on Friday (June 26) morning. – AFP
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