Last week, Beyonce and Adidas announced their new partnership. Back in 2016, Beyonce launched her Ivy Park label of athleisure-wear, which was then in partnership with TopShop. Ivy Park bought out its stake in TopShop last year, and ever since then, Beyonce has been meeting with various sportswear companies, looking to partner up with someone new. Adidas won out and Beyonce called it “a partnership of a lifetime” and she will still have a major hand in designing, branding, advertising and more. Adidas is happy too, because they’re now business partners with friggin’ BEYONCE. But people had questions – why Adidas? Why not some other athletic brand? What did Adidas offer her that no one else did? Or put it another way, why did she outright reject other labels? On ESPN, a sportswriter had some gossip:
Writer Nick DePaula shared the story during an appearance on ESPN’s The Jump, explaining Beyonce’s new partnership with Adidas is about more than just throwing her name on athletic wear.
‘For her, it really goes beyond that. It’s not just about putting her name on a shoe and here’s the new Adidas Beyonce 1, or whatever they end up calling it,’ he said. ‘It’s about having an imprint on the company and an impact in terms of diversity.’
With Beyonce having more than 126 million Instagram followers, it’s no surprise that brands were lining up to try and work with her, but DePaula made it clear that the singer practices what she preaches when it comes to inclusion and representation.
‘Throughout this process over the last year or two, she had discussed with Under Armour, with Reebok as well, Jordan [at Nike] at one point was interested in maybe partnering with her,’ he said on The Jump. ‘She had a meeting at Reebok and they had a whole presentation of everything, potential products, how this could all look, and she kind of took a step back and said, ‘Is this the team that will be working on my product?’ Somebody said, ‘Yes,’ and she said, ‘Nobody in this room reflects my background, my skin color and where I’m from and what I want to do.’ So she took a step back and left and then it did not come to terms.’
LOL, Reebok should have known better. Now they’re canceled! The Beyhive is going to be burning Reebok sh-t for years now. Reebok knows the story looks bad for them too, because they quickly issued a statement:
A rep for Reebok told Dailymail.com: ‘The report that Beyoncé walked out of a meeting with Reebok due to lack of diversity is categorically false. Our discussions with Beyoncé and her team continued for several months after our initial meeting. We are disappointed that false information is being reported as fact.’
That’s the thing about Beyonce no longer giving interviews and just letting her actions speak for themselves – she’ll never come out and verbally confirm or deny the story. Do you believe Beyonce would leave a corporate meeting just because she looked around and realized that everyone in the room was a white bro? I do. And that’s just my assumption on the white bro thing – from what I’ve seen, the corporate culture of sportswear/athleisure-wear companies is just the same as corporate culture everywhere else: dominated by white bros. There are some corporations who do specialized divisions for women, divisions which actually hire (gasp) women and women of color. Adidas must be one of them.
— BEYONCÉ LEGION (@BeyLegion) April 5, 2019
Photos courtesy of Beyonce’s Instagram.