OCT. 2, 2013 • As Japan is the only market where the Wii U outsells the Wii, Nintendo Co. Ltd. has announced that it will soon be ceasing further production of the Japan Nintendo Wii. For the fiscal quarter ending June 30, Wii U sales in Japan were 90,000, versus the 20,000 of Wiis sold there. In the rest of the world the situation is reversed with the Wii outselling its replacement. In the Americas 100,000 Wiis were sold during the quarter compared to 60,000 Wii Us, while in all other markets Nintendo saw 10,000 Wii Us sold versus 90,000 Wiis. Nintendo says it will continue producing Wiis for markets outside Japan.
Impact: Japanese consumers seem to understand that the Wii U is the successor to the Wii with improved specifications and features. By Nintendo’s own admission the same cannot be said in the rest of the world. True, the Wii’s low price and ample street credibility after selling more than 100 million units could be fueling stronger Wii sales globally over the Wii U. Yet consumers outside of Japan don’t seem to have been sold on why they would need a Wii U over a Wii. Nintendo of Europe promises that it will be spending significantly more on Wii U marketing during the upcoming holidays. In the U.K. a portion of the spend will be to secure shelf space at Tesco locations, as well as sending out 300,000 brochures to Tesco customers who bought a Wii but not a Wii U. We fear the task ahead requires far more Herculean efforts to turn around the reality that only 10,000 Wii Us were sold in three months outside Japan and the Americas.