No consoling Nintendo on poor results

A SET of bleak third quarter results from Nintendo, flanked by a drastic increase in expected losses for the year, could drive the final nail into the coffin of its game consoles.

The Japanese company reported a nine-month net loss of 48.4bn yen (£400m) – compared to the 49.6bn yen profit collected by this point last year – blaming the rising strength of the yen and Apple’s growing domination of the market.

Nintendo’s operating loss for the fiscal year so far came in at 16.4bn yen, considerably down from gains of 158.8bn yen last year.

The influential gaming company upped its expected full year operating loss to 45bn yen from a previous expected profit of 1bn yen, and said its net loss could be up to 65bn yen – more than triple its previous forecast of 20bn yen.

Profits for 2010 were 77.6bn yen.

The company, founded in 1889 to produce Japanese playing cards, pointed its finger at the rising yen – which has gained 5.6 per cent against the dollar in the past year – for its discouraging results. Nintendo makes almost 80 per cent of its revenue internationally.

While the Nintendo 64 revolutionised the market in terms of home console gaming and the Game Boy and DS remain unmatched as top-selling handheld devices.

This fiscal year, Nintendo has so far sold 8.96m Wiis – a 35 per cent drop ­– and 11.4m 3DS devices.

Annual sales forecast for the 3DS were cut from 16m to 14m and sales of the Wii from 12m to 10m.