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Nintendo Switch Things Around, Investors Optimistic

After a dismal 2018, Nintendo investors are optimistic as stock jump and Nintendo solidify their 2019 game lineup.

According to a report in Bloomberg, there has been a 22 per cent stock jump since a December low, following a peak-to-trough slump of 44 per cent in 2018.

2018 saw Nintendo investors smashed by lower-than-expected sales of the Nintendo Switch and a steep share decline.

Although weaker hardware revenue is expected when Nintendo reports results at the end of the month, software sales for the last three months of 2018 show strength.

Analysts have estimated that roughly 18 million Nintendo Switch consoles were shipped the fiscal year (ending March 2019), short of Nintendo’s target of 20 million, which is partially reflected in the current share price.

Sales of consoles have also reportedly increased during the quarter, climbing 22 per cent from a year earlier to 8.7 million units.

Nintendo will also likely get a boost from sales of its new titles, including Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, by 27 per cent the report estimates.

The Kyoto-based company have a stronger Switch game lineup for 2019, including highly-anticipated new Pokemon game, sequels to Luigi’s Mansion and Animal Crossing, and Mario Kart Tours mobile debut — set to release by end of March 2019.

Nintendo is also reportedly adding 22 classic SNES games to their online Switch subscription service.

Third-party publishers are re-releasing old favourites from the Final Fantasy and Resident Evil series that may help Nintendo get traction in a market that smartphones are now dominating.

As Nintendo recovers from a difficult year, its biggest challenge remains how to attract new customers.

Nintendo’s core audience tends to be nostalgic adults who grew up with Nintendo consoles and Game Boys, and younger children drawn in by the cartoon characters of the SNES and NES universe.

Many are expecting Nintendo to cut prices of its consoles and focus on online gaming in a bid to attract a bigger audience before Sony and Microsoft release their next-gen consoles — expected in 2020.

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