Nintendo felt the full force of foreign exchange losses yesterday as it revealed that its net profits have been hit by a massive 51 per cent - largely a result of the Yen's 12 per cent rise against the US dollar over the course of the financial year.
The Kyoto-based company posted a group net profit of Y33.19 billion (UKP163.09 or 244.14 Euros) for the full year to March 31st 2004, a hefty drop on the previous year, when the company netted profits of Y67.27 billion.
Nintendo spokesman Yasuhiro Minagawa explained: "They were only paper losses. Without them, the earnings results were solid." Nevertheless, the firm admitted it had failed to meet its GameCube shipment targets of six million to the US.
However, next year, the firm is bullish about its recovery prospects, with net profit forecasts set at Y70 billion - over double this year's figure, on the back of what Nintendo expects to be a successful DS launch, with production targets set at 3.5 million for the FY 04/05, along with a ship target of over 14 million GBAs.
Group sales, meanwhile, were up 2.1 per cent to Y514.81 billion from Y504.14 billion a year earlier, and operating profit rose 7.6 per cent to Y107.68 billion. The company has forecast a further three per cent rise in the current FY, to around 530 billion Yen.