Prior to E3 2014, there was the sudden news that Satoru Iwata wasn't attending the event for health-related reasons, though no details were given aside from reassurances that it was still "business as usual" for the Nintendo President.
With Nintendo's AGM (Annual General Meeting of Shareholders) set to take place on 27th June, the company has now confirmed that Iwata-san will not be in attendance. The company president issued the following letter to shareholders on Nintendo's investor relations website.
Thank you very much for your continued extraordinary support of us. I am Satoru Iwata, President of the company.
Today, there is one thing that I would like to share with you.
Recently, as the result of one of my routine physical examinations, an issue was detected. Following a more detailed examination, a growth was found in my bile duct.
In general, it is said that a bile duct growth can be difficult-to-treat, partly because of the difficulty of detecting it early. In my case, luckily, it was detected very early and I had no symptoms.
I was counseled that removal at an early stage would be the desirable medical option. Therefore I had surgery last week, and I came through it well, as predicted.
I have already resumed my business by email and by other means, but it is anticipated that a little more time is needed for me to return to my regular work schedule.
As a result, I have no choice but to miss the company’s very important activity, the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders, to be held this month. As the president of the company, I regret that I cannot attend the meeting. However, I understand that I have to prioritize my medical treatment and to recover as soon as possible so that I will again be able to do my best to help the company to grow. I hope that you understand.
This letter certainly contains good news in terms of alleviating any long-term uncertainty over Satoru Iwata's health, even if he can't attend the company's AGM as normal.
We wish Iwata-san a speedy recovery.