As expected, EA Sports will continue to dominate the NFL video-game space.
The NFL has announced the extension of the longstanding deal with EA Sports during Thursday’s virtual ownership meeting. Albert Breer of SI.com reports that it runs through 2025, with an opportunity to be extended by another year, if certain revenue markers are met. Via Darren Rovell of TheActionNetwork.com, the deal is worth at least $1 billion to the NFL and $500 million to the players.
Thus, EA Sports will continue to have exclusive rights to produce NFL-licensed video games. Earlier this year, the league struck a deal with 2K for the development of non-simulation games.
In order to end competition from the popular (and cheaper) 2K game, EA Sports purchased exclusivity 15 years ago. That exclusivity will continue for at least six more seasons.
Plenty of gamers pining for an alternative to Madden won’t like it, but that’s just the way it is. NFL chief media and business officer Brian Rolapp explained during a post-meeting conference call with reporters that the process was opened up to multiple companies, given the changes that have been made in how games are distributed and played since the last time the deal was done.
“EA made the most compelling case,” Rolapp said, “and beat out the competition pretty soundly.”
Rolapp said that “all models” were considered, including granting licenses to multiple companies, but that EA Sports had a strong “plan of innovation for the next handful of years,” and that EA Sports was strongly pushing exclusivity as part of the continued arrangement.