The reality of the challenge confronting Wii U has finally struck Nintendo.
Having throughout 2013 steadfastly stuck to its 9m unit sales forecast for the console for the current financial year, the platform holder has at last reduced that prediction.
It now says it will likely sell just 2.8m Wii U consoles in the period – less than a third of what it was expecting.
It has also forecast a $240m loss for the year – down from the $480m profit prediction it had been making. This will be Nintendo’s third consecutive annual loss.
Wii U sales fell short of our targeted recovery by a large margin,” President Satoru Iwata said. Sales in the US and European markets in which we entered the year-end sales season with a hardware markdown were significantly lower than our original forecasts, with both hardware and software sales experiencing a huge gap from their targets.
In addition, we did not assume at the beginning of the fiscal year that we would perform a markdown for the Wii U hardware in the US and European markets
We can no longer expect our financial performance to recover in the current fiscal year.”
Even 3DS sales estimates have been cut. They now stand at 13.5m units, down from 18m units. 3DS games sale forecasts have been cut from 80m units to 66m.
Pressure will now inevitably mount on Iwata who has overseen an 80 per cent reduction in the firm’s value since 2007. The exec has said that he is considering a new business structure for the company, with more details likely to be revealed when Nintendo reports its third quarter report later this month.