THQ Sues EA Over Transfer of UFC License

Posted October 9th, 2013 at 3:45 pm


Legal troubles continue for Electronic Arts despite settling cases regarding player likenesses in college games and pricing tactics after receiving exclusivity for Madden. The latest is the now defunct THQ filing suit against EA and Zuffa (parent company of UFC) regarding the transfer of the UFC license that took place last summer.

THQ is asking for the deal to be nullified and rights returned to them with any profits from the upcoming EA Sports UFC theirs to keep. The company claims that EA provided Zuffa with confidential information regarding the financial state of THQ during negotiations. That resulted in the parties conspiring to make the acquisition to the best of their interests by using the info to their advantage and offering less than they may have otherwise. According to the filing they believe the $10 million settlement for Zuffa to get out of their agreement would have been something more like $20 million had EA not interfered.

The problem for THQ here will be that no one needed internal numbers to recognize that the company was a sinking ship and it was public knowledge that sales of the UFC franchise dropped off 70% from the first to third release while under their control. UFC had every reason to move to a more stable situation and EA to look for a deal to acquire the property. EA Sports UFC is currently slated for release next spring.