The international governing body of soccer knows women’s sports are more popular than ever — and expects broadcasters to pay accordingly.
FIFA has rejected several bids for media rights to the 2023 Women’s World Cup for being too low, according to its chief business officer Romy Gai.
“This is not a case of being priced out,” Gai told Bloomberg, “but rather testament to a lack of willingness of broadcasters to pay what the women’s game deserves.”
FIFA has yet to name the broadcasters that submitted bids but rejected offers from Italy, Germany, France, and the U.K. It is also expected to deny a bid in Spain.
- The 2019 Women’s World Cup drew 1.12 billion total viewers, per FIFA.
- 993.5 million viewers watched on TV, while 481.5 million used digital platforms.
The 2023 Women’s World Cup — which runs July 20 through Aug. 20 — stands to be a promising broadcast opportunity in the wake of increasing global interest in women’s soccer.
In July, the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 had a projected global cumulative live viewership of 365 million — making it the most-watched edition ever. The tournament was also the best attended in history, with an average of 18,544 fans and a record aggregate attendance of 574,875 fans.
All major segments of women’s soccer are expected to grow, setting the stage for what could be a record-setting Women’s World Cup.
Sponsorships are projected to increase sixfold for up to $300 million each year, while media rights could be worth more than $260 million each by 2033.