Stock shortfall menaces jinxed Nintendo launch

Nintendo will face a major stock shortfall for its Nintendo-64 games console when the delayed launch finally goes ahead on March 1.

The launch of the first 64K computer games system in the UK is already over a year late because of hitches in development and problems with stock.

But now Nintendo admits that even taking advantage of the postponed launch date it will not be able to produce enough units to meet initial demand.

Alexander Fitzgibbons, communications manager of THE Games, which is Nintendo’s UK distributor, says that just 20,000 units will be available in the UK for the first month, but estimates demand will reach 100,000.

The problem will become even graver in April and May. Just 90,000 Nintendo-64s will be available in the first three months following the launch, but Fitzgibbons claims 200,000 will be needed.

He says the problem stems from an excess demand worldwide for the long-awaited product. “It’s a real pity but there’s not much we can do about it. However, we are not in the business of upsetting the consumer.”

This is the first launch THE Games has handled for Nintendo.

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