Nintendo has published the transcript of its latest shareholder Q&A, part of the company's 81st Annual General Meeting which took place on yesterday, Tuesday 29th June, 2021.
While the official English translation is yet to be published on Nintendo's Japanese website, that hasn't stopped people like us Google Translating it, or people like Cheesemeister on Twitter providing a significantly better translation of the ten-question document than Google's automated service.
The Q&A covers a variety of hot subjects, ranging from the very serious (gender issues and human rights issues in its supply chain) to the speculative (the rumoured 'Switch Pro' and the possibility of further entries in the company's Classic Mini consoles line) to the downright dull (Euro exchange rates).
Unfortunately, the answers tend to fall very much into the [WORDS GO HERE BUT NO COMMENT] category. For example, Cheesemeister's translation of Nintendo President Shuntaro Furukawa discussing changes to the current Nintendo Switch Online offering are as follows:
A pretty standard 'introduce subject, discuss success of subject, add nugget of non-information that doesn't really answer the question' tactic, then.
When asked what he thought of the E3 2021 Switch Pro rumours, Furukawa had this to say (via Cheesemeister's translation):
Another 'we're always developing hardware' answer there — Doug Bowser would be proud.
It's a similar story with the possibility of Classic Mini consoles ("we will continue to consider how to convey their appeal to new generations"). On the subject of gender issues, Furukawa was similarly vague:
We are aware that there was a report that Uyghurs may have been forced to work in the factories of our supply chain. However, as far as we have investigated the factory pointed out in the report, we could not find any record that it is our business partner, nor have we received any reports of forced labour in our supply chain.
In order to ensure that forced labour does not occur in our supply chain, we have established a CSR procurement policy and we ask our suppliers to comply with our activities based on the Nintendo CSR Procurement Guidelines.
We conduct our business under the policy that if there is any actual or serious risk of forced labour, not only for Uyghurs, we will stop doing business with them.
As a global company, we will continue to work with our production partners to implement ethical policies regarding manufacturing, labour and sourcing, and to ensure high quality mass production. In addition to apparel products, we are also committed to the same policies that we have just described for our suppliers.
We're still looking through the answers to other questions and wrestling with various translations. In the meantime, give Cheesemeister a follow, will you? And feel free to grade Furukawa-san on his skillful non-answers in the comments below.
On the plus side, the Nintendo honchos in the meeting did reveal their favourite games! (Spoilers: they're mostly Nintendo games. Fancy that!)