Take-Two boss remains coy on potential FIFA deal following EA split
“FIFA has a great brand and incredible clout, but we have no current plans to discuss”
Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick has talked up the FIFA brand while refusing to be drawn on whether the publisher is interested in partnering with football’s world governing body following its split from EA.
FIFA and EA revealed last week that they would be ending their near 30-year partnership following the release of their final game together later this year.
EA will introduce the EA Sports FC series in 2023. And according to FIFA, discussions are currently ongoing with “leading game publishers, media companies and investors” in regard to the development of a new FIFA simulation football game for 2024, which would directly compete with EA’s new series.
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Take-Two publishing label 2K currently has NBA, WWE, NFL and PGA partnerships, and boss Zelnick was asked by IGN if he’d be keen to add the FIFA licence to its roster of sports games.
“We’re definitely interested in expanding our opportunities in sports, and FIFA has a great brand and incredible clout, but we have no current plans to discuss,” he said.
Asked the same question during Take-Two’s earnings call on Monday, Zelnick said: “Well, we noticed [that the FIFA licence is up for grabs] and we tend to be thoughtful about our business at all times.
“We’re excited about building out our sports business and we don’t have much else to say at the moment.”
FIFA president Gianni Infantino said in a strongly worded statement last week: “I can assure you that the only authentic, real game that has the FIFA name will be the best one available for gamers and football fans.
“The FIFA name is the only global, original title. FIFA 23, FIFA 24, FIFA 25 and FIFA 26, and so on – the constant is the FIFA name and it will remain forever and remain THE BEST.”