Things aren’t exactly looking up for Mario and his pals.
In its report on the recently concluded financial year, Nintendo indicated losses of nearly $457 million (or 46.4 billion yen), and cited underwhelming sales of the Wii U as a major factor in the company’s earnings — or lack thereof, in this case. According to Nintendo’s official statement, the company has sold 43.33 million units of its handheld 3DS system and only 6.17 million units of its Wii U since each console arrived on shelves.
In its report, the company offered several explanations for the Wii U driving down profits.
“The ‘Wii U’ hardware still has a negative impact on Nintendo’s profits owing mainly to its markdown in the United States and Europe, and unit sales of software, which has high profit margins, did not grow sufficiently, leading to a gross profit of 163.2 billion yen,” states the report. “Total selling, general and administrative expenses exceeded gross profit, resulting in an operating loss of 46.4 billion yen.”
The report wasn’t entirely negative, though, and cited certain Wii U titles’ success despite low sales of the console itself.
“With respect to ‘Wii U,’ while five key first-party titles, such as Super Mario 3D World, New Super Mario Bros. U and New Super Luigi U became million-seller titles, the ‘Wii U’ business as a whole showed slow growth,” stated the report in its “Analysis of Operations.” “The global sales of the ‘Wii U’ hardware and software reached only 2.72 million and 18.86 million units respectively.”
While the sales numbers for the 3DS were a little brighter, neither system hit its projected figures for the recent fiscal year. Still, Nintendo anticipated a turnaround in the upcoming year, thanks to to the arrival of several titles for the 3DS, including the recently released Mario Golf: World Tour and the upcoming Tomodachi Life and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS.
On the Wii U side, Nintendo hopes to stimulate sales by pushing more titles that take advantage of the Wii U Game Pad — which it called “the most important differentiator” between the Wii U and other consoles. The addition of more titles for the Wii U Virtual Console is also expected to boost sales, and the impending release of Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U were also cited as “main drivers” for console sales.