Hip Hop artist and businessman Kanye West announced Thursday he will be relocating the headquarters of his billion-dollar shoe and clothing company, Adidas Yeezy, to Cody. The company is a collaboration between German sportswear brand Adidas and West.
He made the announcement during the Fast Company Innovation Festival in New York City, while giving insight on a variety of different topics.
West said the headquarters will be located at his more than 4,000 acre West Lake. The property just south of Cody was formerly known as Monster Lake Ranch.
It is not clear at this point whether any Yeezy manufacturing will be moved to Cody as well, but West did express his intention to move manufacturing to the United States in the near future.
West, who considers his brand “the Apple (computers) of apparel,” emphasizes the avant garde fashion styles presented in the company lineup. His products are generally upscale, garnering $120-$220 for his shoes, $600 for sweatpants and $3,000 for jackets on average.
According to Forbes Magazine, Yeezy is expected to top $1.5 billion in sales in 2019. As of 2018, Yeezy headquarters were located in Calabasas, Calif., where he owns a home with his wife Kim Kardashian.
“Cody is a great place to stay if you’re into working with a real, living, true and breathing founder that cares about humanity,” West said, referring to himself.
Last summer, West was building prototype “Star Wars” inspired dome-shaped homes on his Calabasas property. He said the homes were to provide homeless people and recently released prison inmates a place to live, in his effort to end class division.
But those structures were demolished in September after West refused to abide by L.A. County Department of Public Works building code. He said the agency further exacerbate the situation by alerting the media about it.
“Your dome is 10 feet too high boy,” he recounted being told by city staff. “10 feet on my own 300 acre property? And we could have handled it ... but you wanted to go to the press.”
In contrast, West mentioned one of his motivations for moving to Cody being that the, “building restrictions are way lax,” allowing him necessary creative opportunities.
“So we can think,” he said.
When asked if he intends to build structures for the same purpose in Cody, West deflected the question.
West said he plans to initiate a“seed-to-sew” operation at the ranch, creating sustainable clothing by farming hydroponic cotton, wheat and hemp that is grown and processed at the property. He said the company will utilize the hands-on approach to make the dyeing process less harmful to the environment.
“Our color is a big signature for the brand, but also dyeing is one of the main things impacting the planet,” West said.
A music video for his new song “Follow God” premiered on Thursday and it appears to have been shot at West Lake. At the end of the video, West makes the reference to “one of our ranches in Cody, Wyoming” but it is unclear what other ranch property he is referring to in Cody.
West did recently buy the 6,713 acre Flitner ranch in the Big Horn Mountains near Shell. That property was on the market for $14.4 million, a similar asking price to what Monster Lake Ranch was running for.
He also recently bought commercial property at Mountain Equipment, which sits across the road from Fremont Motors on Big Horn Avenue.
During his presentation at the Innovation Festival, West said he plans to run for president in 2024, adding he will provide so many jobs by that point, “I’m not going to run, I’m going to walk,” for president.