adidas Announces $120 Million USD Investment In The Black Community
PORTLAND, OREGON — Last week, D.M. Fashion Book reported that several minority employees at German sportswear, sneaker and apparel giant adidas staged a protest after the brand orchestrated several high-profile moments aimed at lending its voice and platform to the fight against racial injustice in America (see it here).
Last week, a group of 13 adidas employees representing 150 colleagues demanded that the sportswear giant make changes, specifically that the company “invest in its Black employees; invest in the Black community; invest in the fight for racial justice and change for Black people; and demonstrate accountability” (see it here).
Responding to this letter, adidas has now announced a string of new initiatives. The headline announcement from the sportswear giant is the investment of $20 million USD in programs to support the Black community. Additionally, the company is set to finance 50 university scholarships for Black employees, and both adidas and Reebok have announced plans to increase representation of Black and Latinx people across their workforces.
Launching the initiatives ahead of virtual townhalls in Portland and Oregon, adidas CEO Kasper Rorsted explained how protests around the world had led the brand to “reflect on what we can do to confront the cultural and systemic forces that sustain racism. We have had to look inward to ourselves as individuals and our organization and reflect on systems that disadvantage and silence black individuals and communities. While we have talked about the importance of inclusion, we must do more to create an environment in which all of our employees feel safe, heard and have equal opportunity to advance their careers. As Adidas, we will create a lasting change and we will do it now.”
After initially announcing $20,000,000 USD in donations to support the Black community, adidas has now upped its commitment to $120,000,000 USD over the next four years. In a series of tweets, the brand expounded on its charitable initiatives and future plans, also issuing a statement to “give credit where it’s long overdue.” adidas also doubled down on its commitment to increase diversity in hiring practices, stating that 30% of all open internal and external positions would be filled with Black and Latinx talent while 50% of all open positions will be filled with “diverse” talent.
See the tweets directly below.
Photos Credit: Jenna St. Martin Photo