Nintendo Has A New “Business Development Department”

By Ishaan . May 13, 2014 . 11:33am

Recently, Nintendo integrated its videogame console and portable divisions into a single group, dubbed the “Integrated Research & Development Division”. In addition to this, the company completed construction of a new R&D Development Center, which Nintendo president Satoru Iwata says will be occupied this June, after E3.


Once Nintendo’s developers move into the new building, they will be able to communicate more closely with one another than before, as departments that previously worked in different buildings will now share the same headquarters.


Additionally, at a financial results Q&A, Iwata touched upon a new Nintendo division—the “Business Development Department,” which the company established in March. This group will be involved in decisions regarding things like character licensing, new markets and so on, and will report directly to Iwata himself.


“We have gathered experts from a variety of different fields for this department,” Iwata shared with analysts and investors. “By working with others in the R&D divisions, these members have already been acting as contacts for a variety of different business partners, and have been making proposals and planting the seeds for discussion.”


“The Business Development Department will play an important role in our company producing tangible outcomes for the topics we have been discussing recently: the active use of our character IP, future approach for the new markets, future of the new business fields, how we are going to change the definition of our future platforms and how we will take advantage of smart devices.”


One of the new markets Nintendo intends to pursue in the future is the “quality-of-life,” business, starting with a focus on health products that could potentially provide entertainment to users.

Read more stories about on Siliconera.

  • Ethan_Twain

    So, if I read this right, this is a department responsible for overseeing Nintendo’s first forays into making money by doing things beyond making video games and video game boxes?

    That’s a good thing! Nintendo has needed to diversify for a long long time. I wonder if this division is also taking over Seattle Mariners oversight.

    Any predictions for what sort of collaborations we’ll see? More officially licensed figurines and soundtrack releases are the easy ones. Maybe more promotional anime work like was created for Kid Icarus?

    • Pillbugable .

      This wouldn’t be Nintendo’s ‘first foray’ into non-video game things, considering that when they started as a company, they made playing cards.

      • Ethan_Twain

        Bah, your technicalities are unwelcome here. Would it make you happy if I edited the sentence to read “first forays into making money by doing things beyond making video games and video game boxes since 1990”?

        Tough, not gonna do it.

      • 0nsen

        “Playing cards” is a really nice way to say gambling cards. Because it doesn’t imply the truth that Nintendo made its first big buck selling stuff to the yakuza (mafia). Which is also probably where they got their name from in the first place. Though the official story is nobody really knows why they are called Nintendo or why this can read “leave your luck to heaven”. Yeah. Gambling. You get it.

        • Tom_Phoenix

          Nintendo made all sorts of cards, including cards with Disney characters on them (one of their biggest early successes) and pin-up cards (you know, cards with pretty, not-so-modestly dressed ladies).

    • PreyMantis

      They’ve been doing that for a long time. It’s called Pokemon.

  • CozyAndWarm

    This is a good idea. Nintendo’s marketing needs a good kick in the pants, and their timeless IP can be huge moneymakers outside of just video games.

    • Kaetsu

      I’m actually looking forward to their timeless IP being licensed out in the video game industry. More games like Hyrule Warriors where Nintendo gives their IP to other companies would be great.

    • Aaron K Stone

      A Kid Icarus comedy animation would be gold if it was penned by Nintendo Treehouse. Metroid Movie, Zelda Anime, Live action Fire Emblem series. So many possibilities.

  • byakuran

    wait what the fuck am I reading does that mean Nintendo won,t do video games ? the fuck is this is this a joke i still wanna play their games focus on health products ? WHAT i really don,t care if they did cards or not I don,t give a rats ass i invested MY TIME IN THERE GAMES that was an established thing FOR A VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY LONG TIME this going to hurt badly i can feel it in my heart

    • Landale

      I’d like to know what you’re reading too. They combined parts of the company into one for dealing with consoles and portables, and created a new part to the company to handle things beyond games.

      • byakuran

        oh okay kinda like Sony ? so will their handhelds and wii u games be fine ?

        • Landale

          Fine is subjective, but they’re not going anywhere.

        • Guest

          The way I read it, more like Level-5…

  • Ony

    Step 1: market Wii U like hell
    Step 2: release everything worldwide
    Step 3: ???
    Step 4: profit!

    • ronin4life

      They have recently started doing number 1
      They are(And Have been) doing Number 2(Tee-hee…)
      Perhaps “????”, rather than the joke, is the actual answer. Because 1 and 2 aren’t helping.

      • Ronin4life, as the Businessmoogle that I am, I will confirm to you that “????” is ALWAYS the actual answer to reach Profit.

        • ronin4life

          So basically…
          No one knows how to make money, and it is all a Russian-Roulette style guessing game?

          What a scary world we live in…

          • Scary? It’s the most boring place to be. It’s the same deal, but different paint job. History repeating itself is a sick joke. The moment something new happens, it either becomes a waning fad, or it’s just a spin-off to something existing.

      • idrawrobots

        Everything means everything, not most things. I want my NES Remix 1+2 on disk.

  • James Enk

    Let’s hope for a brighter future for Nintendo

  • SirRichard

    So can we get a scale figure of Lucina now?

    More seriously, it seems that they’re finally realising that their wealth of characters and big names can be put to more use than just games and plan to capitalise on that, as well as more carefully planning how to handle the likes of China opening themselves up to games and so on. It’ll be interesting to see what, if anything, comes of this.

    • Kaetsu

      A Lucina figuring would be amazing!

      • Ric Vazquez


    • ronin4life

      I think they are making a lucina figure actually.

      • SirRichard

        I’ve seen shots of a prototype figma of her in her disguise, but I don’t really like figmas (the joints and general proportions just drain the appeal for me), but it’s since vanished from trade shows and the like. Cordelia got a scale figure announced at Wonder Festival (pretty sure it was a scale), and of course Tharja has one already, which makes me hope for a Lucina one at some point.

        EDIT: Whoops that link wasn’t there when I typed this up, but yeah, that’d be it. Hoping for something other than a figma, really.

        • ronin4life

          I want Fire Emblem Nendoroids myself… ^ ,^

          • SirRichard

            I’d like FE Nendoroids, I’d like more Nintendo ones in general, really. Nintendo’s style can easily suit them, all the Nintendo ones so far have been wonderful.

    • PreyMantis

      This is not new to Nintendo. They’ve been doing this since Pokemon and those cereals…

      • SirRichard

        And cartoon shows in the 80s well before Pokémon and all, yeah, but for some time after all that they just stopped doing it, largely kept to themselves outside of Pokémon merchandising and the occasional thing for their own stores. They’re beginning to branch out again, and good thing too.

        • PreyMantis

          Hopefully, it goes well and not end up like some of those they made back in the day (I’m looking at you, Captain N and your misrepresented various video game characters).

  • They should work on making movies/animations of their IPs. I mean imagine a Fire Emblem animation @[email protected] that would draw some attention and cash :P

    • colorblindnightmare

      Fire emblembthe animation would be awesome. Also a cg Metroidovie would be stellar. Pun intended

      • They have so many good IPs that would be awesome to see them being explored more in other mediums.

    • Aspenharls

      I dunno, last time they made an animation, my sight and vision couldn’t handle all of the “Spaghetttiiiiii”
      Joking aside, a Fire Emblem anime adaptation or something would be fantastic, granted they don’t tone it down too much in terms of violence.

  • PreyMantis

    People here seem to forget Pokemon– one of the biggest multimedia juggernaut. It sounds like people think this is Nintendo’s very first branching of their own franchises, which is false.

    • Landale

      To be fair, Pokemon is not Nintendo specifically but rather Nintendo with Game Freak, Creatures Inc, and The Pokemon Company which have varying levels of connection to Nintendo itself.
      The question then simply becomes, is this the first time they’ve done this without relying on another company’s assistance? That I don’t know.

      • PreyMantis

        The only company here not directly a part of Nintendo is Game Freak. Creatures Inc. and The Pokemon Company are both affiliated with Nintendo. Nintendo may not be in direct control, but it is the parent company. Pokemon is owned by Nintendo, so I still stand on the franchise Nintendo OWNS being one of the biggest multimedia franchise that people forgets.

        • Landale

          I’m not questioning that at all. I’m just pointing out that there is technically a difference.

          • PreyMantis

            Don’t get me wrong, I’m just simply proving more background on your initial question about Nintendo doing their own thing by not relying with other companies. Besides that, I don’t think Nintendo can do much branching out with their franchises without relying on other companies due to them mainly a video game company.

          • Haganeren

            Even without that, they have a lot of second party for making games like the one which have done Luigi’s Mansion 2 recently, or Good Feel, or Camelot, or AlphaDream, or even Sega for title like F Zero GX.
            Nintendo always had tighter link with the company they works with…. But it means their is a lot less of company which go to their console “without” their support

  • Mikari✘

    And yet, no news about Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem.


    • This is from a shareholder meeting, dude. They don’t care.

  • Kornelious

    I kinda wish Nintedo would just get back to making good games….All the alternative buisness plans seem to be de-railing….

    • AkuLord3

      Because they stopped doing that…oh wait no…they didn’t and you know Business is important to if you want more good games from them OR you’re missing what this is about…

      • Kornelious

        Nintendo just seems to be all over the place right now, I’m worried if they know if their doing the right thing or not for buisness

        • Haganeren

          You know, when i see a good product like Wonderful 101 failing, i’m wondering if the problems is REALLY the games. It’s not as if a new Mario, Zelda or worse, Metroid or F Zero would change their problems and they know that.

          They needs something to make people interested in them again… That’s why they search.

  • SetzerGabbiani

    Nintendo already licences their characters to a variety of companies…or they have historically anyway. In the 80s you could find Nintendo characters everywhere…so this isn’t really news to me. It seems that they scaled back licensing some time in the 90’s and are now re-opening the floodgates. Nintendo cereal 2014 edition anyone?

Video game stories from other sites on the web. These links leave Siliconera.

Siliconera Tests
Siliconera Videos