Nintendo’s 1st Quarter 2017 Financial Results
Nintendo has revealed its sales data for the first quarter of this year (April through June 2017). Some sales milestones have been reached with Nintendo Switch software. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe has been a heavy seller (released at the end of April) with over over 3.54 million copies sold in just two months. ARMS has already broke a million sold with 1.18 million. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild sold an additional 1.16 million copies, giving it an install base of 3.92 million sold so far.
Hardware sales are still supply constrained, with Nintendo pretty much selling everything they can manage to ship. From April through June they shipped 1.97 million Nintendo Switch consoles, giving it an install base of around 4.7 million worldwide. Nintendo shipped 8.14 million pieces of software during that timeframe, for a total of 13.6 million total.
During the first quarter of this period (April through June 2017), for Nintendo Switch, we released Mario Kart 8 Deluxe in April to favorable response, selling 3.54 million units worldwide. ARMS, released in June, is also off to a good start with 1.18 million units sold globally. In addition, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, released in the previous period, has also continued to perform well, selling 1.16 million units worldwide (3.92 million units on a cumulative basis). Altogether the sales volume for Nintendo Switch hardware and software during this period came to 1.97 million units and 8.14 million units respectively.
For Nintendo 3DS, Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia was released in Japan in April and overseas in May and has been a popular title. Hardware sales were 0.95 million units (1% increase on a year-on-year basis) and software sales were 5.85 million units (31% decrease on a year-on-year basis).
As there were few new types of amiibo compared to the same period last year and few new titles offering amiibo functionality, amiibo sales were approximately 1.60 million units for figure-type and approximately 1.30 million units for card-type. In our digital business, sales of the digital versions of packaged software and downloadable content on Nintendo Switch showed steady growth, with total digital sales of 11.0 billion yen (41% increase on a year-on-year basis).
For smart devices, many consumers are continuing to enjoy Super Mario Run and Fire Emblem Heroes, which were released during the previous fiscal year. Our smart device and IP related income was 9.0 billion yen (450% increase on a year-on-year basis).
With this background, we had an operating profit of 16.2 billion yen and an ordinary profit of 30.9 billion yen against net sales of 154.0 billion yen (of which overseas sales were 113.8 billion yen or 73.9% of the total sales). The profit attributable to owners of parent for this quarter was 21.2 billion yen.
For Nintendo Switch, we are planning worldwide releases for Splatoon 2 in July and Super Mario Odyssey in October, and there are several big titles from other software publishers planned for this period.
For Nintendo 3DS, we are launching New Nintendo 2DS XL across the globe in June and July as a new addition to the hardware lineup. On the software front, we are releasing Hey! Pikmin worldwide in July, and we plan to release Pokémon Ultra Sun and Pokémon Ultra Moon in November. There are also strong third-party titles on the way for Nintendo 3DS.
In addition, Super Nintendo Entertainment System: Super NES Classic Edition is a compact recreation of Super Nintendo Entertainment System, which launched in 1990, and it features a collection of 21 titles selected from the rich library of Super NES games. We plan to launch this system globally in September and October.
In our smart device business, we will introduce new game applications while also focusing on continued operations for our released applications so that consumers can enjoy playing them for a long time.
There is no revision to the financial forecast for this period originally published on April 27, 2017.
If we compare this year’s first quarter versus last year’s first quarter, we see that Nintendo is doing extraordinarily better so far this year. This no doubt is mostly due to the success of the Nintendo Switch, the continued selling of 3DS systems and software, and its mobile initiatives. The bottom line is that Nintendo has posted a profit after taxes of 21,795,000,000 yen ($194 million) for first quarter this year versus a 24,530,000,000 yen ($219 million) loss during the same time period last year. What a turnaround!
Other interesting tidbits from the financial information shared is that download sales via the eShop have increased from 7.8 billion yen during first quarter 2016 to 11 billion yen during first quarter 2017. The sales breakdown of Nintendo 3DS hardware is roughly: 23.5 million in Japan, 22.7 million in North America, and 20.8 million in Europe and other territories, for a total of 67 million sold.
The Nintendo Switch sales breakdown is: 1.12 million in Japan, 1.95 million in North America, and 1.63 million in Europe and other territories, for a total of 4.7 million sold. Perhaps most interesting is that the life-to-date Nintendo Switch software sales are highly skewed to North America, with nearly half of all software sales taking place here: 2.45 million Japan, 6.49 million North America, and 4.66 million Europe and other for a total of 13.6 million. The forecast from April 2017 through March 2018 of Nintendo Switches sold is 10 million (roughly 2 million have been sold this fiscal year so far). 35 million pieces of software are forecast for the same time period, with a little over 8 million sold thus far.
Craig has been covering the video game industry since 1995. His work has been published across a wide spectrum of media sites. He’s currently the Editor-In-Chief of Nintendo Times and contributes to Gaming Age.