Kanye West may be the one in the headlines, but Pharrell moved units in 2015.
Pharrell Williams was always the quiet one, both in his real-life mannerisms and the way he conducts his business. It’s only fitting that the legendary producer be credited with much of Adidas’ success in 2015, despite Kanye West ruling any headlines involving a musical artist and the German brand.
Bloomberg Business reports that Adidas sold 15 million pairs of Superstars in 2015, no doubt in large part due to Pharrell being given that shoe as his own to promote in “the year of the superstar.” The three stripes brand released 50 different versions of the Adidas Superstar and used Pharrell as the central figure throughout their advertising. The Superstars ended up making up 10% of Adidas’ entire revenue for the year, an impressive feat for a company that produces much more than just shoes.
So, while Kanye may be the loudest voice and the one in charge of the most exclusive Adidas releases, he’s still playing with small numbers in terms of products and profit. Given how few of West’s products are even produced, he’s really more of a way for Adidas to re-brand itself than a way for them to make money. And money is what matters most to these companies in the end.
Check out one of the many Pharrell-centrick Adidas ads from 2015 below.