Nintendo posts $958M profit but cuts Switch target despite strong Christmas sales

Nintendo has cut its ambitious annual Switch sales forecast despite enjoying a strong Christmas Q3 quarter.

The Japanese games giant recorded a 104.21 billion JPY ($958 million) net profit on revenue of 608.39 billion JPY ($5.59 billion) between October and December 2018. Revenue was up 26 percent year-on-year, which is an impressive feature given that quarter was a successful one for Nintendo, yielding its biggest operating profit in a Q3 for eight years.

The Nintendo Switch is now closing down on lifetime sales of the N64. Nintendo shifted a record 9.41 million consoles during the three-month period, up 30 percent annually, to take it to 14.49 million this financial year, which began in April 2018. However, despite a success last quarter, likely helped in no small amount by Christmas, Nintendo has trimmed its ambitious goal to sell 20 million Switch units this financial year. Instead, the target is 17 million, which means it is estimating around 2.5 million sales during January, February and March.

In terms of games, a bunch of new releases performed well in the last quarter. Pokémon: Let’s Go sold 10 million titles since its November release, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate sold 12.08 million since its December launch and Super Mario Party, released in October, reached 5.3 million sales. Total game sales jumped by 101 percent to reach 94.64 million sales during the period.

Nintendo’s retro consoles — the NES Classic and Super NES Classic — sold 5.83 million. But there is bad news for Nintendo loyalists, the upcoming Mario Kart Tour mobile game won’t ship in March — its revised launch date is this summer.