Iwata Says He Didn't Commit to Stepping Down Over Missed Profit Targets
Posted by Thomas Whitehead
So we should stop saying he will
Earlier this year we reported on translated comments from Satoru Iwata at a Corporate Management Policy Briefing, in which he made a personal commitment to Nintendo's target of 100 billion Yen of operating profit for this current financial year. It's a substantial target that was reiterated in Nintendo's end of year briefing in April, with a Wii U revival in later 2013/2014 and a strong year for 3DS targeted to deliver the result.
At the time, Satoru Iwata described it as a personal commitment, which was widely interpreted — sensibly considering the context — to mean that Nintendo's President was making the target an integral part of him retaining his post. After years of unparalleled success with the DS family of systems and the Wii, a first net loss last year and the missing of targets reported in April somewhat tainted that run, as Nintendo has struggled to maintain profitability in the face of slow starts for the 3DS — since revived — and Wii U.
It seems the assumption that Satoru Iwata would step down in the event of missing this year's targets are false, however, as he's been reported as making the following blunt statement in an investor's meeting.
I don't recall saying I'd resign.
So that's that. It was added, of course, that the company is working hard to achieve its operating profit goal; the hardware and software targets outlined earlier in the year seem feasible, but only if the upcoming Wii U game lineup delivers a significant upturn this Holiday season.
Are you relieved to hear that missing this profit target won't automatically prompt Satoru Iwata to step down? Let us know what you think in the comments below.