Bottom line: Semi-annual earnings are out, and Nintendo reports that the Switch is on track to outsell the SNES. Since April, the company moved 4.98 million of the portable consoles for a total of 41.67 million units sold so far. This number is just shy by 7.43 million of Super Nintendo’s 49.1 million lifetime sales.
The numbers are up 50 percent over the same period last year. As of April 2019, the hybrid portable has already outsold the GameCube, Wii U, and N64. Furthermore, holiday season 2018, the company shipped 9.41 million units. So the chances are good that the Switch will overtake the SNES, maybe even by year’s end.
Nintendo was not that optimistic, however. The Switch is still short of an 18 million unit sales goal it hopes to meet this fiscal year, which ends March 2020. The company is still 11 million away from that target.
However, overall sales were bolstered by the introduction of the less expensive Switch Lite, which sold 1.95 million. It may not seem like much, but when you consider the Lite launched on September 20 and Nintendo’s six-month earnings period ended September 30, it’s a pretty good head of steam for the portable system going into the holidays.
Nintendo finished the period strong in software sales, as well. Super Mario Maker 2 was a top-seller, moving 3.93 million units. The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening remake was not far behind with 3.13 million in sales, which is phenomenal since it was a September release. Fire Emblem: Three Houses also performed well, managing 2.29 million. All totaled, software sales increased by 36.7 percent year-on-year, with 58.49 million units sold in all.
Unit sales may have been up, but profits have been somewhat flat from the same period last year. Gross profit saw a year-on-year increase of about 56 percent, but net profit dropped from 64.3 trillion ($5.95 billion) to 62 trillion yen ($5.74 billion) from the same period in 2018.
It will be interesting to see how well Nintendo does over the holidays, especially with the Switch Lite looking to be an ideal Black Friday stocking stuffer. We’ll see if its early momentum will carry over to the new year.
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