Nintendo’s president for the Americas says he has already studied the feasibility of making consoles in Brazil «several times», but the lack of technical capacity of the Brazilian industry prevents the operation.
In an article published today by Bloomberg, the president of Nintendo for the Americas region, Reggie Fils-Aime, stated that the Japanese game producer has already studied several times the possibility of producing consoles in Brazil, but gave up when concluding that the national industry would not have “technical capabilities” to produce the devices.
The statement, however, comes up against the fact that Microsoft and Sony they manufacture the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 in the country, respectively. Microsoft, in fact, has already started national production of its next console, the Xbox one. Nintendo devices are currently produced in Asia by Taiwanese Foxconn.
Without national manufacturing, Nintendo consoles (Wii U and 3DS) are subject to the highest import taxes applied by the government and the volatility of the dollar, which drastically increase costs and drive buyers away. This problem also affects the PlayStation 4, but Sony has already said that it intends to produce it in Manaus as soon as possible.
In the case of Wii U, the console doesn’t even have official distribution in Brazil. This means that consumers will not have benefits such as manual in Portuguese and technical assistance. Nintendo intended to bring the video game in early 2013, but postponed the arrival to this quarter.
Another concern of the company is in relation to the piracy. Nintendo has included Brazil on a list of countries where the production of counterfeit items must be monitored by U.S. trade authorities. Even so, a report released this week by the consultancy GFK shows that Brazilians have increasingly opted for the formal market when buying electronic games.
Despite the complaints, Fils-Aime believes that the game market in Brazil has «great potential». The company has been facing difficulties in territories such as the USA, Europe and Japan, due to low sales Wii U and competition with smartphone gamesTherefore, it plans to expand into new markets, such as Latin America.
Sources: Bloomberg, O Globo, UOL Games