JULY 21, 2010 • The purveyor of the FIFA video game franchise, EA Sports, signed an exclusive four-year partnership with the English Premier League (EPL). The league will promote the EA Sports brand during televised matches, and will dedicate content for future FIFA titles. The publisher also becomes the EPL’s official technology partner, and will provide the league with an EA Sports Player Performance Index to be used during broadcast coverage and analysis. Broadcasters will also be able to use EA Sports graphics, game animations and interactive technology.
Impact: Worldwide soccer is by far the most popular sport for video games. The two largest competitors have been Electronic Arts with its FIFA series and Konami with the Pro Evolution Soccer series. Generally FIFA has been stronger in North America and Pro Evolution has performed better in Europe and Japan. This seems to be changing. Over the past two years, EA has been aggressively promoting its soccer games in Europe and the results seem to be paying off as FIFA sales have soared, while Pro Evolution seems to be on the decline.