Nintendo on Friday raised its fiscal-year profit forecast by 26 percent from an earlier figure, citing healthy sales of its Wii home console...

Share story

TOKYO — Nintendo on Friday raised its fiscal-year profit forecast by 26 percent from an earlier figure, citing healthy sales of its Wii home console and DS handheld game machines.

Nintendo, with U.S. headquarters in Redmond, also credited a recovering dollar for its new projection of 410 billion yen ($3.8 billion) profit for the fiscal year ending March 2009.

The Kyoto-based company had previously forecast 325 billion yen ($3 billion) in profit for the fiscal year. The revised projection would mark a whopping 60 percent jump in profit compared with last fiscal year.

The Japanese maker of Super Mario and Pokémon games also raised its sales forecast for the fiscal year ending March 2009 to 2 trillion yen ($18.3 billion) from an earlier 1.8 trillion yen.

Nintendo said it expects to sell 26.5 million Wii machines in the fiscal year ending March 2009 — better than the initial estimate for 25 million, and the 18.6 million sold the previous fiscal year ending March 2008.

Nintendo revised its forecast for DS sales upward to 30.5 million units for the fiscal year through March 2009, from 28 million. It sold 30.3 million DS machines the previous fiscal year.

Favorable exchange rates are also expected to help earnings, Nintendo said in a statement. The company now expects the dollar to cost 105 yen, higher than the previous estimate at 100 yen. A stronger dollar boosts the earnings at Japanese exporters like Nintendo by lifting the value of overseas earnings translated into yen.

Last month, Nintendo reported a 34 percent jump in April-June profit at 107.27 billion yen ($996 million).

Behind the stellar performance is the hit Wii and its game software, including the “Wii Fit,” which has drawn the health-conscious to simple exercises like yoga and aerobics.

The company has now sold worldwide a cumulative 29.6 million Wii machines, which has a trademark wandlike remote controller.