GENEVA (AP) — After a financially successful 2022 World Cup in Qatar, FIFA had approximately $4 billion in reserves, and rising hospitality and ticket sales for the 2026 event in North America are likely to add billions to FIFA’s profits.
FIFA disclosed “exceptionally solid” finances in its 2022 annual report, which resulted in President Gianni Infantino’s annual bonus increasing by 620,000 Swiss francs ($673,000). His basic pay and bonuses reached 3,6 million Swiss francs ($3.9 million) before taxes, in addition to other FIFA-paid costs and perks.
At the November World Cup, FIFA declared record revenues of about $7.6 billion for the four-year commercial cycle until 2022, with the men’s World Cup earning the lion’s share.
FIFA’s reserves were $3.97 billion at the conclusion of the year, compared to $1.6 billion through 2021.
“FIFA’s financial condition is unusually solid and sustainable, with a considerable cash base and enough reserves,” the report from soccer’s governing body said.
The expansion of the World Cup to 48 teams in 2026, which will be co-hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico, is the primary driver of the conservatively estimated $11 billion in annual revenue for the following four years.
Using the home stadiums of the Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Rams, and Super Bowl winner Kansas City Chiefs in addition to other NFL sites has raised FIFA’s estimated hospitality and ticket sales earnings for the next four years to $3.1 billion.
FIFA reported receiving $929 million in Qatar from ticket sales for the 64 games and a hospitality package sold in 2011 to long-time World Cup partner MATCH for a rights fee and profit share totaling $243 million.
According to FIFA’s annual report, “Hospitality sales will be primarily driven by the strategic model in place, which has moved away from the rights fee paradigm under which FIFA’s hospitality services were outsourced.” The 2026 hospitality programme is expected to have operating expenditures of $638 million.
The 2026 World Cup is anticipated to break the attendance record of approximately 3.6 million established in the United States-hosted 1994 tournament, which featured 52 games between 24 teams.
FIFA originally agreed to an 80-game schedule for the 48 teams in North America in 2026, but Infantino said in Qatar that this decision would be reconsidered. A 104-game format is feasible.
FIFA also anticipates substantial growth in the sale of broadcast rights and sponsorships until 2026.
FIFA predicts total broadcast revenues of $4.26 billion from 2019 to 2026, an increase of roughly $1 billion over the period between 2019 and 2022. This new sum is equivalent to one year’s worth of TV and sponsor money for the Champions League in Europe.
Marketing income is projected to increase from $1.8 billion to almost $2.7 billion, although just a few of partnerships, like those with Coca-Cola and Adidas, continue beyond the Qatar event.
The Club World Cup, which will be re-launched in 2025 with 32 teams, was not included in FIFA’s $11 billion overall income forecast. Infantino formerly estimated each iteration of this event at $3 billion.
Spending is also projected to increase significantly until 2026, with FIFA again estimating a $100 million profit over four years.
FIFA anticipates spending $3.84 billion on the 2026 World Cup and $435 million on the Women’s World Cup, which begins in Australia in July.
The men’s tournament in 2026 will cost a total of $896 million, including prize money for 48 teams and incentives to clubs for releasing their players for national-team duty. The 2022 World Cup awarded a total of $209 million to clubs worldwide, based on a daily fee per player.
In addition, FIFA will provide $2.25 billion in development funding to its 211 member federations, which will receive at least $2 million year, the six continental confederations, and regional soccer organisations.
According to the study, an additional $660 million is available via the Football Development Fund to promote the sport “in all its forms and at all levels.”
FIFA said that it has “played up to its duty as the primary source of information for football fans worldwide” by spending tens of millions on communications such as websites and phone applications.
Over the next four years, it’s anticipated that $367 million will be spent on governance and administrative employees. Some employees, such as those in the marketing and legal departments, are expected to work in North America rather than in Zurich, FIFA’s headquarters.
Last year, FIFA’s CEO-like secretary general Fatma Samoura was paid 1.9 million Swiss francs ($2.06 million) in salary and bonuses, including a bonus that increased to 600,000 Swiss francs ($650,000).
FIFA provides short-term loans to Swiss public entities via an internet marketplace that connects investors with borrowers. The total sum of these loans from third parties was $737 million as of December 31st, according to FIFA.