Nintendo cut its earnings outlook and forecast annual losses, as the sales of its new Wii U games console lost momentum.
Nintendo modified the ernings forecast to reflect a lower-than-expected sales outlook based on the sales performance in the year-end sales season and afterward.
The company is forecasting an annual loss of 20 billion yen ($220 million) in the year to March, slashing its previous forecast of as much in profit.
Nintendo lowered the sales forecast for Wii U in the year to March 31 to 4 million consoles from its previous estimate of 5.5 million, and also cut the sales outlook for handheld devices 3DS and Wii as well.
The firm reduced its 3DS sales estimate to 15 million consoles compared with an earlier 17.5 million, and cut its projections for the DS to 2.3 million from 2.5 million in October.
During the nine months ended December 31, 2012, the "Nintendo 3DS"
software, "New Super Mario Bros. 2," released in Japan in July, and in the U.S. and Europe in August, marked a total of 5.96 million units in worldwide sales. In addition, the "Animal Crossing: New Leaf" game sold well in both packaged and downloadable formats. This title was released in Japan in November and became a hit title with 2.73 million units sold in total. Furthermore, Nintendo's evergreen titles, such as "SUPER
MARIO 3D LAND" and "Mario Kart 7," released last fiscal year, kept selling steadily. With significant contributions from these titles, the "Nintendo 3DS" hardware and software reached worldwide sales of 12.71 and 39.56 million units respectively.
However, the worldwide sales of the "Nintendo DS" hardware and software were only 2.15 million units and 30.24 million units respectively due to an accelerated generational change to "Nintendo 3DS" in the handheld device segment.
"Wii U," was launched as the successor of "Wii," in the U.S. and Europe in November, and in Japan in December. Nintendo said the "Wii U" software, "New Super Mario Bros. U" and "Nintendo Land," both of which were released simultaneously with the "Wii U" hardware, sold 2.01 and 2.33 million units respectively. The worldwide
sales of the "Wii U" hardware were 3.06 million units and those of the "Wii U" software were 11.69 million units.
With respect to the "Wii" system, although "Mario Party 9," the latest title in the Mario Party series sold over one million units, the sales of the "Wii" hardware and software were 3.53 and 45.08 million units worldwide respectively, mainly due to few new title releases.