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FIFA and EA Sports end 30-year partnership, EA Sports FC confirmed as new name

Electronic Arts announced that FIFA 23 will be the last FIFA video game from EA Sports, with the developer moving to EA Sports FC next year, in line with what was revealed in a trademark filing last October.

After a nearly three-year partnership, EA parted ways with world football governing body FIFA and exited one of the world’s most successful video game franchises, which has racked up billions in sales. It marks the split of one of football’s most successful and lucrative partnerships after the two sides failed to reach a new licensing deal.

The game’s licensing rights bring FIFA around $150 million (approximately Rs 1,158 crore) a year – out of a projected total revenue of $7 billion (approximately Rs 54,066 crore) for 2019-2022, this is The single largest commercial revenue – despite a FIFA statement hours after announcing the loss of that revenue.

FIFA is looking to at least double the $150 million it receives from EA Sports a year, The New York Times reported in October, adding that there are different expectations about what should be included in the new deal.

EA has made a “significant offer” to FIFA for eight years of exclusivity across all of FIFA’s gaming and esports rights, but the global soccer body is reluctant to offer all of its games and esports rights alone, according to Reuters. Esports rights are locked to one publisher. in October.

However, the two entities have reportedly adjusted to maintain the partnership until next summer’s 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, with FIFA granting a new short-term extension to EA Sports for the launch of the new FIFA 23 later this year. champion.

But even before the EA Sports partnership ended, FIFA promised “some new non-simulation games” ahead of the 2022 FIFA Men’s World Cup, which kicks off in Qatar in November. These new football video games are being developed by third parties – party studios and publishers, FIFA said.

In a statement, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said: “I can assure you that the only real game with the FIFA name will be the best available to gamers and football fans. .”

That said, EA has been making FIFA games for nearly 30 years, and to generations of young people, FIFA means video games rather than sports institutions.

While EA Sports FC will not be able to include FIFA content, including the World Cup, it retains 300 licensed partners, including football events such as the Premier League, La Liga and UEFA-organized League.

The licensing agreement will help EA retain the and leagues of most of the world’s most famous clubs and stars, whether it’s Paris Saint-Germain and Lionel Messi of Argentina, or Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United and Portugal.

EA’s announcement showed the of these partnerships, with enthusiastic comments from executives from the Premier League, UEFA and La Liga, while a coordinated release of tweets from dozens of football clubs used the phrase “we are at the club” The slogan comes with the EA Sports FC brand.

EA CEO Andrew Wilson said: “We are grateful for the great partnership we have had with FIFA over the years. The future of global football is very bright and fans around the world have never been stronger.”

Wilson promised “more innovative and authentic experiences for the growing football audience”, while its soon-to-be rival FIFA said it wanted to create “a whole new interactive experience” for fans around the world.

Infantino said: “The interactive gaming and eSports industry is on a path of unparalleled growth and diversification. FIFA’s strategy is to ensure that we are able to take full advantage of all options for the future and to ensure a wide range of offerings for gamers and opportunities, fans, member associations and partners.

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