As FIFA opens up its doors to offers for the licensing of its brand name, a massive video game developer has teased their interest after seeing EA SPORTS potentially planning for a future without it. That developer is 2K Sports.
Both EA and FIFA have released statements suggesting they are at a stalemate in negotiations for the renewal, with the latter reportedly demanding $1 billion every four years to keep their partnership going.
At the same time, the global football body also noted they would be looking to expand their video game division, which suggests EA could lose the exclusivity they have enjoyed for over two decades.
They said in a previous statement: “The future of gaming and esports for football stakeholders must involve more than one party controlling and exploiting all rights.”
“Technology and mobile companies are now actively competing to be associated with FIFA, its platforms, and global tournaments.”
EA SPORTS FC is a trademark that’s been filed as a potential replacement in the future, though no confirmation arrived as a follow-up. Since then, it appears that other candidates are now rearing their heads.
2K Games is known for its involvement in various sports and entertainment franchises, from NBA to WWE. While some elements of their portfolio, like MyCareer, will undoubtedly appeal to a section of FIFA’s current audience, it would be a tremendous shift in power within the space.
2K chief on buying the FIFA license
On November 3, VGC posted transcribed notes from a 2K Sports earnings call.
Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick was probed on the idea of purchasing the FIFA license in the future, should EA leave them hanging.
With Take-Two owning Top Eleven, which it bought alongside Nordeus this summer, many believe that they have laid the groundwork to make a giant leap. But, what did Zelnick make of it?
He replied: “We are so thrilled to have Nordeus in the Take-Two family. They’re just crushing it and Top Eleven is a great, beloved title. I just couldn’t be happier to be in the soccer manager business through Top Eleven with the Nordeus team.
“That’s a big step forward for us… we haven’t been in that sport before. And erm, I think I’ll leave it at that today.”
Whether or not this is a deal 2K Sports will pursue in the future remains to be seen, but he didn’t exactly rule out the possibility.