Nintendo Sinks Into Loss on Weak Sales
TOKYO (AP) - Nintendo Co. sank into a 43.2 billion yen ($533 million) loss for the fiscal year just ended as weak sales of the Wii home console and the strong yen eroded earnings.
Kyoto-based Nintendo, once the star of video games with franchises like Pokemon and Super Mario, has seen its glory fade with the advent of smartphones that are wooing away casual gamers.
Nintendo, whose products compete against offerings from Microsoft Corp. and Sony Corp., acknowledged sales suffered because of the price cut on the 3DS during the fiscal year.
Such price cuts are relatively common to boost slow sales and try to make up in profit later from game software sales. But that strategy has chipped away at Nintendo’s earnings.
Nintendo, which did not break down quarterly numbers, had reported a 77.6 billion yen profit the previous fiscal year.
But the company was upbeat about a turnaround on the back of the upgrade to its Wii called "Wii U," set to go on sale at the end of this year - critical because of year-end shopping revenue.
Nintendo also said it will continue pushing its online "Nintendo Network" service that will link players of the Wii U, which will come with a touch-screen controller, with those of its handheld Nintendo 3DS offering three-dimensional imagery.