Mario Kart fails to put the brakes on Nintendo's losses

Mario Kart fails to put the brakes on Nintendo's losses
James Batchelor

By James Batchelor

July 30th 2014 at 10:12AM

Best-selling racer accounts for more than half of Wii U game sales in three months ended June 30th

Despite the success of Mario Kart 8 and a handful of 3DS releases, Nintendo has reported a ¥9.4bn operating loss for the first quarter of the fiscal year.

Both ordinary loss and net loss came in at ¥9.9bn for the three months ended June 30th. Nintendo attributed this to "total selling, general and administrative expenses" that exceeded the platform holder's gross profit, which was reported as ¥32.5bn. Net sales generated ¥74.6bn, of which ¥58bn – almost 80 per cent – came from outside Japan.

3DS continues to be the firm's strongest seller, with 820,000 units and 8.57 million games sold. Wii U managed to shift 510,000 units and 4.39m games. With sales of 2.82m since its end of May launch, Mario Kart 8 accounts for more than half of software sold for Wii U during the quarter.

Looking ahead, Nintendo expects "robust profits" from 3DS, thanks in part to the upcoming releases of Super Smash Bros and the next Pokémon duo.

The platform holder noted that Wii U has gained momentum thanks to Mario Kart, and Nintendo plans to maintain that with the release of Hyrule Warriors, Bayonetta 2 and Super Smash Bros by the end of the year. The launch of the Amiibo range – Nintendo's answer to Skylanders – is also expected to "further stimulate the platform".