Image Credit: Electronic Arts
The newly rebranded EA Sports FC registered 14.5 million active accounts on console and premium PC in its first four weeks according to Electronic Arts’ latest earnings report. This includes double-digit growth in new players for the franchise. In comparison, FIFA 23 reached 10.3 million players in its first week.
In 2022, FIFA and EA had a falling out when the global soccer/football governing body reportedly wanted $1 billion for franchise’s naming rights. The video game developer declined, hence the EA Sports FC rebrand. While the time period isn’t the same, it’s safe to say that fans returned regardless of the change in branding.
“They maintained revenue guidance, but increased EPS guidance by 25 cents a share, so the clear takeaway is that they are saving more from not paying FIFA a license fee than they had to spend to drive awareness of the re-branded EA Sports FC game,” said Michael Pachter, analyst at Wedbush.
According to the earnings report, EA Sports’ soccer franchise outperformed Q2 expectations with net bookings growing 41% year-on-year. However, this also includes continued earnings from FIFA 23.
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“The successful launch of EA SPORTS FC represents a profound achievement. We have reimagined and expanded one of the largest franchises in the world, setting new standards of authenticity, innovation, and social interaction,” said Andrew Wilson, CEO of Electronic Arts, during its earnings call. “Fan reception of FC has been extraordinary, expanding our already thriving global football community.”
In addition to its console and premium PC versions, FC mobile set new franchise records with 2 million installs in its first day. This grew to 11 million in its first 10 days. Additionally, engagement with FC Online is up.
Similarly, its global esports circuit FC Pro broke its registration record. This year, EA Sports unveiled this new esports ecosystem featuring a $1 million competition circuit spanning 10 regions. This includes a robust open bracket component which appears to be driving engagement.
EA Sports FC Sales data
In its September data, research firm Circana reported EA Sports FC 24 was the third best selling title that month. It fell just short of Starfield and Mortal Kombat 1. However, this data only includes the first two days of its sales since the game released on September 29.
For the year to date, EA Sports FC was the fourteenth best selling title. It fell short of of Madden NFL 24 and MLB: The Show 23 which hold third and tenth respectively.
October’s data could see a major shift that will include more of the soccer sim’s launch window. According to Mat Piscatella, Circana’s executive producer for games reports, EA Sports FC saw double-digit growth across both units and dollars compared to FIFA 23’s launch month. Alongside its earnings report, this is another sign that the game developer made the right call.
EA expects expect low single digit growth for the franchise for the full year as the World Cup boosted FIFA 23’s performance.
— Edited November 1, 2023 @ 2:50pm PT: added information from EA’s prepared remarks during its Q2 FY24 earnings call
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