Nitendo reports $229 million in losses after abysmal Wii U sales

Nintendo sank to a loss for the fiscal year ended March as sales of its Wii U game machine continued to lag, but the Japanese manufacturer of Pokemon and Super Mario games promised Wednesday to return to profit this year. Kyoto-based Nintendo reported a 23.2 billion yen ($229 million) loss, a reversal from a 7 billion yen profit eked out the previous year. Annual sales fell 10 percent to 571.7 billion yen ($5.6 billion). It did not break down quarterly numbers.

Nintendo has posted a 46.4 billion yen ($457 million) loss for its fiscal year ending March 31, marking it a third year of annual losses in a row for the beleaguered company. The Wii U–which Nintendo revised sales estimates down from 9 million to 2.8 million back in January–sold just 2.72 million units over the last 12 months. Lifetime sales stand at 6.17 million units. This stands in stark contrast to Sony’s PlayStation 4, which–despite only being on the market just over six months compared to the Wii U’s 18–has sold over 7 million units. “The Wii U hardware still has a negative impact on Nintendo’s profits owing mainly to its markdown in the United States and Europe,” Nintendo said in its financial statement, “and unit sales of software, which has high profit margins, did not grow sufficiently.”

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