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Nintendo reported its sales for the nine months ended December 31 dropped 6% to $11.52 billion, compared to the first nine months of 2020.
Operating profit for the first nine months of 2021 was $4.13 billion, down 9.2% from $4.55 billion the year before. The company now forecasts that its fiscal year ending March 31, 2022 will hit an operating profit of $4.89 billion on $14.41 billion in sales (down 6.2% from a year earlier).
Nintendo said the Switch OLED model got off to a good start in October. The Nintendo Switch and the Nintendo Switch Lite also sustained sales momentum even after the OLED model launched.
But a year ago, Nintendo benefited from the launch of Animal Crossing: New Horizons in March 2020, at the start of the pandemic. Animal Crossing went on to sell 37.6 million units to date and much of that benefit was in 2020.
So the 2021 results are lower than a year earlier as a result.
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During the first nine months of 2021, Nintendo sold 18.95 million Switch units, down 21.4% from the first nine months of 2020. Still, that was enough to push sales to 103 million, surpassing the Nintendo Wii’s 101 million as the most popular console in Nintendo history.
This year, Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Pokémon Shining Pearl sold 13.97 million copies, while Mario Party Superstars sold 5.43 million copies and The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword HD sold 3.85 million copies.
Other titles released in previous years like Mario Kart 8 Deluxe also sold well, and Animal Crossing pumped out another 5 million copies this year.
The Switch has now topped 103 million hardware units sold, and software sales have reached 179.29 million copies sold.
Digital sales were roughly flat at $2.2 billion. And mobile games generated $347.4 million.
Nintendo said it expects all three models to further grow in sales in the future. Pokémon Legends: Arceus just debuted and Kirby and the Forgotten Land is coming in March. Like Sony, Nintendo also noted a global semiconductor shortage is creating uncertainty, with a possible impact on production and shipping.