Yesterday, it was announced that Nintendo would be exiting the video game market in Brazil.
Video game companies have numerous challenges in the Brazilian market; the country’s high import tariffs on games and consoles make them prohibitively expensive to buy legitimately, and as a result game piracy is a huge issue. It’s very possible that Nintendo was unable to turn a profit in the current environment. If you want to learn more about Brazil’s game market, Extra Credits did a great episode on their challenges and potential a couple of years ago.
As for Nintendo? Some are criticizing them for abandoning the market; some are hoping other companies follow suit, until the government is forced to change policies that are stifling the industry’s growth. The right answer may be impossible to decipher, so until then Nintendo has decided to do what’s best for their business. Nintendo of America’s Director and GM of Latin America, Bill van Zyl, gave the following statement:
“Brazil is an important market for Nintendo and home to many passionate fans but unfortunately challenges on the local business environment have made our current distribution model unsustainable in the country. Working together with the Juegos de Video Latinoamérica, we will monitor the evolution of the business environment and evaluate the best way to serve our Brazilian fans in the future.”