The July 11 issue of Fortune magazine features an in-depth look at Nintendo's success and how it has managed to "beat the pants off Sony and Microsoft". The company has experienced both embarrassing defeats and resounding successes over the course of its 118 year history. Now, thanks to a combination of penny-pinching and industry leapfrogging, Nintendo turns a profit from every Wii console sold, unlike Sony and Microsoft who lose money each time their respective system is bought.
Taking a look at Nintendo's finances, the company generated over $8.26 billion in revenue last year, or $2.5 million for each of its 3,400 employees. By comparison, Google's employees generated $994,000 each, while Microsoft's staff scraped in just $624,000. Exchange rates and fiscal calendars complicate the comparison, but the difference is still striking.
Nintendo's strategy has been successful in attracting new gamers to the fold, but what about core players who grew up with NES controllers in their hands? Are we as smitten with Nintendo as Fortune seems to be? Is Nintendo's success little more than new players getting a taste of videogames for the first time?