Ea's rumored nfl deathblow

If this is true, with it goes whatever small chance Visual Concepts (or anyone else) had to challenge Madden. Kinda a nasty route for EA to take in a market it already clearly dominates…

The May 3 issue of the Journal contained a story with the headline “EA set to pay Players Inc. $1 billion.” According to the article, Electronic Arts is in final negotiations with Players Inc., the NFL Players’ Association marketing arm, to exclusively license all NFL player rights for the next four years. The Journal set the price tag of the deal at $250 million each year, which EA would pay Players Inc.; in other words, a literal billion-dollar contract.

Given the large sums reportedly at stake, the exclusivity of the EA/NLFPA deal would be almost certainly strict. If that turns out to be the case, no non-EA Sports game could license NFL player likenesses–an almost certainly fatal blow to the Madden series’ rivals.

When provided with excerpts from the article by GameSpot, EA Sports representatives promised to pass them along to “someone who can answer your questions.”

I don’t suppose Jim Preston can answer those questions? :)

In other news, I hear Eagles Quarterback is making a comeback this year.

I don’t see how the financials of that make sense.

Killing off your competition for 4 years is as good as killing them permanently, I think. That probably makes the price a bit easier to swallow.

That sum sounds insane. Not even EA could sell enough units in 4 years to recoup 1 Bio $.

Well, if this goes through, guess I’m done playing sports games for the next 4 years. I love VC’s work for Sega.

Heh. I know nothing. On an unrelated note, I can talk about Xbox Live now. :)

Well, the story claims that ESPNvideogames.com claims that the NFLPA claims that the rumor is full of shit. Whatever that’s worth.

Disclaimer: I have no idea if the EA rumor is true or not. However …

Konami pulled a similar move some years ago with professional Japanese baseball. They didn’t do it to destroy their competition, they did it to gain control (and get a percentage) of all pro-Japan baseball-related licensing.

There is no chance that rumour is true. Those numbers are preposterous.

The rumor does cast the buy-out of sega into a different light, though.

Any idea if the Konami deal was deemed a successs?

  • Snacko

From a psycological warfare perspective, it worked like a charm. They positioned themselves to negotiate licenses, look at the business plans and evaluate all their rivals’ games using the IP. Said rivals were not happy campers. Sun Tzu would have been proud. I know they got at least some financial return (games were released) but no details on the extent. I suspect the power-position was worth whatever they paid.