Nintendo have today announced rather significant cuts to their full-year financial forecast, the result of lower than anticipated hardware and software sales across Wii U and 3DS.
This has seen Wii U’s estimated hardware sales reduced from 9 million, drastically cut down to an expected 2.8 million. Whereas 3DS was lowered from 18 million to 13.5 million.
In the wake of this, Nintendo anticipate another year of reporting a financial loss, having previously hoped to have been able to achieve a profit of 55 billion yen (£332 million). Instead, this is now predicted to be a net loss of 25 billion yen (£146 million).
In an extensive explanation, Iwata stated that the company were pleased with the growth in market share that the 3DS achieved in western countries, noting success across North America, but having not gained enough traction in Europe, where “relatively strong sales” were only seen in France.
“However, outside Japan, while its market share increased as we continued to release compelling titles throughout the year, Nintendo 3DS did not reach our sales targets in the overseas markets, and we were ultimately unable to achieve our goal of providing a massive sales boost to Nintendo 3DS in the year-end sales season,” Iwata explains.
“Using the U.S. market as an example, Nintendo 3DS became the top-selling platform in the last calendar year, according to NPD, an independent market research company, with its cumulative sales exceeding 11.5 million units; however, the estimated annual sales of the Nintendo 3DS hardware remain significantly lower than our initial forecast at the beginning of the fiscal year.
“In Europe, while the individual markets showed different results, France was the only market in which we experienced relatively strong sales, and we failed to attain our initial sales levels by a large margin in other countries.”
It’s the Wii U that has been shrouded in worry since it’s November 2012 launch however, although Iwata was keen to note that affordable hardware bundles and Super Mario 3D World have shown notable sales progress. Regardless, the lofty 9 million unit target for the year was still an ambitious one, with Iwata noting that sales in North America and Europe “fell short of our targeted recovery by a large margin.”
More information will be provided at Nintendo’s Corporate Management Policy Briefing, which will be held on January 30th.