Super six-month performance for Nintendo boosts holiday hopes

5 Nov 2020132 Views

Image: © Andrey Armyagov/Stock.adobe.com

Nintendo has issued a more optimistic forecast for the coming months on the back of a strong half-year performance buoyed by lockdown gaming surges.

Reporting its financial figures for the six months ending 30 September 2020, games giant Nintendo has revealed an eye-watering 243.6pc surge in profit to 213.1bn yen (about €1.7bn).

The huge lift in earnings for the Japanese company comes on the back of increased demand for gaming products while regions across the world have faced coronavirus-related restrictions.

Overall, net sales at Nintendo in the six-month period rose 73.3pc to 769.5bn yen.

Looking at individual games’ performance in the reporting period, Nintendo said that September release Super Mario 3D All-Stars is “off to a good start” with 5.21m units sold, while July’s Paper Mario: The Origami King for Nintendo Switch has sold 2.82m units.

However, it was an older title that carried much of the momentum for Nintendo’s strong six-month performance. The much-anticipated Animal Crossing: New Horizons, which was already responsible for a strong performance in Nintendo’s last quarterly report, continued from strength to strength with 14.27m units sold in the reporting period.

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Released in March following several delays, the serendipitous timing made the new Animal Crossing title the distraction of choice for many people in the early days of Covid-19 restrictions due to its charming, laidback vibe and escapist theme.

Nintendo’s next moves

Overall software sales reached 100.25m units, a 71.4pc year-on-year increase. Hardware sales saw an even bigger boost of 80.9pc year-on-year growth to 12.53m units. But the biggest rise was seen on the digital sales side of the business, which includes download-only software and add-ons. Overall, digital sales saw a 139.4pc increase to 171.5bn yen.

The strong half-year performance has encouraged Nintendo to increase its projections for the full year. The company is now expecting to report a net profit of 300bn yen (up from an earlier estimate of 200bn yen) for its full fiscal year ending in March 2021.

The forecast has also brightened for Nintendo’s full-year sales, now projected to reach 1.4trn yen.

New releases in Nintendo’s pipeline include Pikmin 3 Deluxe and Mario Kart Live: Home Circuits, released on Nintendo Switch in October. Pokémon fans can also get more add-on content with the new expansion passes for Pokémon Sword and Shield.

As part of an ongoing celebration of 35 years of Super Mario Bros, the retro handheld game series Game & Watch (originally launched in 1980) will be revived with the November launch of Game & Watch: Super Mario Bros. This will be followed by a new Bowser’s Fury mode for Super Mario 3D World, scheduled for release in February.

Elaine Burke is the editor of Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com