Video game maker EA and Fifa part ways after decades of partnership

BENGALURU (REUTERS) – Electronic Arts is parting ways with world football’s governing body, Fifa, after a nearly three-decade partnership and ending one of the world’s most successful video game franchises, which has generated billions of dollars in sales.

EA made a ‘meaningful offer’ to Fifa for an eight-year exclusivity period on all Fifa gaming and esports rights, but the football body was unwilling to lock in all of its rights games and electronic football with a single publisher, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Tuesday (May 10).

Fifa said it would launch new football video games developed by third-party studios and publishers, but added that it had granted another short-term extension to EA Sports to launch a new FIFA 23 title later this year.

EA reported months ago that the relationship was coming to an end.

The company’s current contract was due to expire after the Qatar World Cup, with the soccer body looking to boost revenue and EA pushing to expand the Fifa brand into new areas such as non-fungible tokens and game highlights. real.

Fifa was seeking at least double the US$150 million (S$208.3 million) it receives each year from EA Sports, its largest commercial partner, The New York Times reported, adding that it there were different expectations as to what should be included in a new agreement.

However, the two entities have reportedly adjusted to maintain the partnership until next summer’s Women’s World Cup.

EA has announced plans to launch a rebranded version of the game, EA Sports FC, next year which will have more than 300 licensing partners, including the English Premier League and Spanish league LaLiga.

The licensing deals will help EA retain most of the world’s famous clubs and stars with their teams and leagues, even though the World Cup and other FIFA-controlled events will no longer be included, the NYT reported.

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