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Sluggish Wii U sales still dragging on Nintendo profit

updated 10:49 am EDT, Wed October 30, 2013

Latest results show Nintendo eking out profit

Nintendo's struggling Wii U console continues to drag on the game maker's earnings, according to the company's newest financial figures. For the six-month period ending September 30, Nintendo generated $2.011 billion in revenue, a year-over-year drop of 2.2 percent. The company did manage to eke out a small profit, though, posting just $6.14 million in profit for the six months.

At issue are the sales of the company's latest home gaming console, the Wii U. Released last year, the Wii U has so far failed to capture consumer interest, as much of the casual gaming market gravitates to smartphones and tablets, while the "hardcore" gamer market waited for more powerful systems from Sony and Microsoft. Nintendo acknowledged such difficulties in its financial release.

"Hardware still has a negative impact on Nintendo's profits," the report reads, "owning mainly to its markdown in the United States and Europe." The reference to "markdown" refers to Nintendo cutting the Wii U's price in August of this year in light of poor sales.

Whereas the original Wii was a cultural phenomenon, selling more than 100 million units and earning Nintendo massive profits, the follow-up has sputtered. In the last fiscal year, the original Wii - now seven years old - outsold the Wii U by more than half a million units. In the most recent quarter, Nintendo sold only 160,000 Wii U units worldwide, while 210,000 Wiis were sold in the same period.

Nintendo's portable devices are still selling relatively well. The 3DS portable console sold 1.4 million units last quarter, but that still represented a year-over-year drop.

Nintendo's financial statement says that the company intends to "concentrate on proactively releasing key Nintendo titles from the second half of this year through next year in order to regain momentum for the platform."

by MacNN Staff




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