Electronic Arts (EA), the maker of popular games like FIFA, Madden, NHL, NBA, and UFC, released its annual report, and we saw that Ultimate Team mode made $1.62 billion. That accounts for about 29% of the total revenue, which was $5.63 billion for the year.
That’s a massive increase from 2017, when Ultimate Team made $775 million. To give you a perspective on the last few years, it earned $1.18 billion in 2018, $1.37 billion in 2019, and $1.49 in 2020.
The company announced that a big part of the increase had to do with FIFA’s popularity. The game had 25 million players, and whether you’re team Playstation or team Xbox, we’re sure you’ve picked up FIFA at least once in your life.
The FIFA Ultimate Team players grew by 16% over the past year, and matches skyrocketed by 180%.
However, FIFA wasn’t the only factor, as Apex Legends had more than 100 million players with 12 million weekly average players. The company also saw a record number of players join Madden over the past year.
The future looks bright for the gaming industry, as forecasts call for the market to reach $295 billion by 2026. In 2020, the industry’s worth was estimated at over $162 billion and was expected to have a compound annual growth rate of 10.5%.
Esports is also going to contribute to that growth. Due to the pandemic, not many events have been organized, but that’s about to change soon. It’s estimated that there will be 300 million frequent esports viewers in 2023.