Over the last few years, Nintendo’s workforce has increased from around 4,000 employees to around 5,000, and R&D expenses of late have been high as well. At the same time, however, Nintendo haven’t been hitting their intended profit margins, with Wii U sales alarmingly low and Nintendo 3DS sales lower than they would like in the west.
In light of these facts, an attendee at a Q&A for Nintendo’s second fiscal quarter asked if the company has any plans to reduce its workforce or take other similar cost-cutting measures. However, Nintendo president Satoru Iwata replied that the company has no such plans to reduce its workforce in the foreseeable future.
“If you believe that there is no possibility of Nintendo’s results improving, then you would be right about it being necessary to review the structure of the workforce and the company itself to match the scale of the business,” Iwata replied.
“However, I believe that there are upward and downward swings in the video game business, that Nintendo has the potential to be a larger-scale business, and that in order to achieve that potential, good developers, localization capability and the ability to sell overseas are necessary. We need a company with a lot of muscle, but a company that also has no excess fat—one that makes smart spending decisions.”
Iwata concluded, “Restructuring the workforce is not the first option we consider even when cost cutting is required. I would like you to understand that this is because we do not see a dark future for Nintendo.”