Kanye West has filed a lawsuit against Walmart for allegedly selling replicas of his Yeezy Foam Runner shoes a year after his company released them.
TMZ obtained legal documents Thursday (June 24) that revealed the hip-hop billionaire’s sneaker and apparel company Yeezy is seeking “major damages” and claimed the retail corporation deceived customers with the unisex “summer beach shoes foam runner” under the Daeful brand, which is sold and shipped by one of Walmart’s Marketplace sellers, Sansix Inc.
West argues that Walmart made an “unauthorized exact copy” of the Foam Runner with a reduced price point of $25 a pop, which could cost his company — that boosted the rapper’s net worth to $6.6 billion earlier this year — hundreds of millions of dollars in sales, according to TMZ.
A rep for Walmart tells Billboard that the shoe is not sold by the retail chain, but by a third-party seller. “We take allegations like this seriously and are reviewing the claim,” the rep said. “We will respond in court as appropriate after we have been served with the complaint.”
Yeezy rolled out the Foam Runner, a cut-out slip-on shoe design reportedly made of algae, in 2019, with the $75 kicks making their official debut on shelves in June 2020. After the Daeful shoes appeared on Walmart’s website, Yeezy claimed it sent a legal warning requesting they be pulled from the site, where the shoes are still available for sale.
In October, while appearing on Joe Rogan’s The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, West expressed his desire to mark down the Yeezy Foam Runner to a lower price than Walmart’s sandals. “So for me, I’m gonna make this shoe be $20,” he said. “Money isn’t real, so the world should eventually be free.”