Nintendo president Satoru Iwata announced in a letter to company shareholders on Monday a new business venture for the company. While Nintendo will still focus on consoles and video games, it will also move into health-related entertainment.
“As the business environment around us has shifted with the times, we have decided to redefine entertainment as something that improves people’s quality of life (‘QOL’) in enjoyable ways and expand our business areas,” he writes. “What Nintendo will try to achieve in the next 10 years is a platform business that improves people’s QOL in enjoyable ways.
“With a platform business that improves people’s QOL in enjoyable ways, we will attempt to establish a new business area apart from our dedicated video game business. We have set ‘health’ as the theme for our first step and we will try to use our strength as an entertainment company to create unique approaches that expand this business.”
He did not offer any details on what the company has planned for this new venture. However this is not the first time Nintendo has tapped into the health market. The Wii was known for its motion gaming controls, which encouraged players to be active. One of the most popular selling video games of all time is the Wii title “Wii Fit,” which was an exercise game. At one time they announced they were going to make a heart rate monitor for the Wii, however that accessory was scrapped.
Iwata had this to say regarding their decision to stay in the traditional video game business.
“We believe that we can capitalize the most on our strengths through a hardware-software integrated platform business, and therefore this type of dedicated video game platforms will remain our core focus.
Iwata said that Nintendo has been experimenting and trying new things since its foundation 125 years ago as a card marker.
“Nintendo has continued to try new things, and with a history of experiencing many failures and small successes, we managed to pioneer the home video game market,” Iwata said. “What has remained the same from the past is that we have always tried to create something new from materials and technologies available at that time, to position entertainment as our core business and to improve people’s QOL in enjoyable ways. We will continue to value self-innovation in line with the times and aim for growth.”
Do you think this is a good business move for Nintendo? Leave your thoughts in the comments.