FIFA’s total investment in Development & Education for the 2019-2022 cycle amounted to USD 2,577 million, an increase of USD 907 million or 54% over the 2015-2018 figure (USD 1,670 million). This growth was linked to increased investment in new and existing development programmes.
The FIFA Forward Programme remained FIFA’s signature development programme and accounted for the biggest increase compared to the previous cycle. The programme is the means by which FIFA shares the success of the FIFA World Cup with its member associations, and it is also a highly prominent sports development programme in global terms. FIFA Forward is designed to provide comprehensive, tailor-made football development support for each of our member associations and the six confederations and is based on three principles:
Forward was launched in 2016 and entitlements increased from USD 328 million in the 2011-2014 cycle under the Financial Assistance Programme to USD 1,161 million in 2015-2018 and then to USD 1,746 million in 2019-2022. The COVID-19 pandemic delayed the use of funds and FIFA’s member associations were unable to use all of their Forward 2.0 entitlements. FIFA therefore reserved all outstanding entitlements for future use as part of the Football Development Fund. For more detailed information regarding FIFA Forward funds released, please see the Annexe.
In the 2019-2022 cycle, FIFA also launched a series of new campaigns and programmes. In 2020, it donated USD 10 million to the World Health Organization (WHO) to support the fight against COVID-19. In 2021, FIFA provided the World Football Remission Fund with a sum of USD 60 million to help finance football-related projects with a positive community impact across the globe.
In 2022, the FIFA Council approved the launch of the Talent Development Scheme implementation phase with funds of USD 200 million. The scheme provides assistance to member associations to give every child a chance to play football and maximise their full potential while further reducing the disparity in the level of football between different regions of the world. In the same year, FIFA also went live with a new streaming video service called FIFA+, which delivers free live matches from competitions around the world, as well as original content and documentaries. The new platform contains an extensive archive of every World Cup match (both men’s and women’s competitions) ever filmed.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and related project and meeting cancellations, decreased travel and the temporary closure of the FIFA Museum, operational expenses turned out to be lower than expected and created savings in the area of technical development, women’s football promotion, refereeing, the FIFA Foundation and the FIFA Museum.
FIFA dedicated USD 147 million to Football Governance, 19% more than in the previous cycle. In 2020, FIFA and world players’ union FIFPRO launched the FIFA Fund for Football Players with a total of USD 16 million, the aim being to provide financial support to players who have not been paid by their clubs. Another important milestone was the go-live of the FIFA Clearing House in 2022. The adoption of the FIFA Clearing House system will effectively ensure the payment of solidarity contribution and training compensation amounts to training clubs all around the world and will remove a major weakness of the previous transfer system. The FIFA Clearing House has the potential to increase the amount of money distributed to training clubs by up to five times of what they previously received. It will be run as a separate entity in charge of processing these payments and will perform an ex ante risk assessment and compliance due diligence on all parties involved.
In the 2019-2022 cycle, FIFA Governance & Administration expenses stood at USD 767 million, USD 31 million below the level of the previous cycle. This reduction was mainly due to the FIFA Congress and FIFA committee meetings being held virtually in 2020 and 2021 and strict cost containment measures in relation to FIFA’s internal organisation lowering costs in communications, buildings and maintenance as well as in litigation and compliance. FIFA also successfully shifted to a hybrid work model that supports both remote and in-office modes and gives its employees a better and more modern work experience. In so doing, it reduced the costs of office supplies and office rentals.
In the 2019-2022 cycle, FIFA spent USD 269 million on Marketing & TV Broadcasting. In line with its commitment to invest in the digital field as part of the FIFA 2.0 vision, FIFA carried out a technical upgrade of its archive to a cloud-based storage solution and increased its digital content and social media activities. In addition, there was a natural increase in sales commission expenditure as a result of FIFA’s unprecedented revenues in the areas of TV broadcasting rights and marketing rights.