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1997: So far, the year of Nintendo; company sales up 156 percent; driven by Nintendo 64 success.

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 18, 1997--Resounding consumer demand for the new Nintendo 64 video game machine has boosted year-to-date company sales 156 percent from levels for the comparable period of 1996.

From January 1 through April 30, 1997, independent sales data show the world's first and only 64-bit game machine is selling more than 60 percent ahead of its nearest rival, Sony's 32-bit PlayStation. Additionally, the industry's seven top-selling games are available exclusively for Nintendo 64.

Nintendo 64 has remained the top-selling system in America for each of the eight months since its introduction (Sept. 29, 1996), according to TRSTS sales data gathered by NPD Research, Port Washington, NY.

"As a company, we're known for making aggressive business plans," says Peter Main, Nintendo of America executive vice president of sales and marketing. "But even we failed to predict the magnitude of Nintendo 64's success."

Nintendo's leadership also extended to its two other video game systems. The Super Nintendo Entertainment System (Super NES) platform has moved to a 66 percent share of the 16-bit category thus far in 1997, with the Super NES game, Donkey Kong Country 3 also joining the seven Nintendo 64 titles on the list of top ten sellers. The portable Game Boy system, newly launched in the "pocket" color versions, is running at 90 percent of the hand-held category, with revenue volume up 15 percent compared to 1996.

In total, Nintendo year-to-date is the industry's leading seller of hardware systems and games, and accounts for 56 percent of all industry revenues.

For its fiscal year, beginning April 1, 1997, Nintendo of America predicts growth of 37 percent for total first-, second- and third-party retail revenues to $2.5 billion. The company projects that amount will represent 51 percent of the entire U.S. video game industry.

The Nintendo 64 system is a product of the worldwide joint development and license agreement combining Nintendo's expertise in video game development with Silicon Graphics Inc.'s (NYSE:SGI) renowned visual computing technologies as used to create special effects in numerous blockbuster motion pictures. Developed in partnership with SGI, the revolutionary Nintendo 64 system launched in the U.S. on September 29, 1996, and has sold more than 2.8 million units to date.

Nintendo Co., Ltd., of Kyoto, Japan, is the leader in the worldwide $15 billion retail video game industry. Nintendo manufactures and markets hardware and software for its best-selling home video game systems, including the hand-held Game Boy, the 16-bit Super Nintendo Entertainment System, and the 64-bit Nintendo 64, the fastest selling video game system in history. As a wholly owned subsidiary, Nintendo of America Inc., based in Redmond, Washington, serves as headquarters for Nintendo's operations in the Western Hemisphere, where more than 40 percent of American households own a Nintendo game system. For information about Nintendo products and past press releases, log on to Nintendo's web site at www.nintendo.com .

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Eileen Tanner, 509/628-1993
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jun 18, 1997
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