Nintendo president Satoru Iwata apologized to investors Friday, following the company slashing sales projections of the Wii U from 9 million to 2.8 million units sold for the fiscal year ending in March. While the public announcement of continually dismal sales for Nintendo's flagging console should not come as a surprise, the company admitting it needed to think about restructuring its business practices is. Iwata said Nintendo needs to change and "propose something that surprises our customers."
""The way people use their time, their lifestyles, who they are—have changed," Iwata said. "If we stay in one place, we will become outdated."
Iwata also said rather than stepping down as president he will stay on with Nintendo while taking a paycut to see the next phase through. It is yet unclear what exactly Nintendo next move is – whether it is putting their games on mobile platforms, ramping up development on a new next-gen console or getting out of the hardware business altogether, or some other plan that goes in some entirely new direction.
Iwata also said part of the problem has been that Nintendo needs to have a better handle on industry trends abroad rather than just in Japanese markets, where the Wii U has seen marginally better sales.
"In Japan, I can be my own antenna, but abroad, that doesn't work," he said.
Nintendo still has billions of savings in their reserves, so even with the Wii U's catastrophic sales they can afford a drastic pivot. The company plans to hold a business strategy meeting January 30.
Via Wall Street Journal