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Industry Analysts Don't Expect Miyamoto To Succeed Iwata

by Kimberley Wallace on Jul 21, 2015 at 07:09 AM

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The gaming industry lost one of its beloved figured unexpectedly over a week ago. Nintendo president Satoru Iwata's death sent waves through the gaming community, with people reminiscing his passion for games and kind spirit. In these sad times, it's tough to think of anything else, but Nintendo will need to pick a successor eventually. Who has the best shot, though?

Some people speculated almost immediately that designer and general manager Shigeru Miyamoto's would take the mantle. Miyamoto is one of the most visible faces of the company, but industry analysts aren't convinced he'll be the one assuming the position. recently asked several analysts who they think Iwata's successor will be; unsurprisingly, most think it will be an internal candidate, but are doubtful it will be Miyamoto. It seems as though hardware manager Genyo Takeda is a front runner in the speculation.

Both Miyamoto and Takeda are serving as representative directors until a successor is named.

 "Although it would be a romantic dream to have the company lead by the father of Mario, I think Takeda-san has more corporate experience and really understands hardware," Nick Parker of Parker Consulting told

Mike Schramm, manager of qualitative insights at EEDAR also agreed telling  that Takeda has "a similar trajectory in the company as Iwata (from programmer to manager to executive)." 

Also noted was that Nintendo could promote any of its executives. Remember Iwata was basically an unknown when he landed the position. Nintendo no doubt has a lot to consider with a new hardware NX on the horizon and a push to get into the mobile landscape by partnering with DENA, a publisher of mobile titles worldwide. Time will tell, whether Nintendo will sway toward someone similar to Iwata, or try someone with a different leadership approach. As always, there are many factors to consider. 

You can read's story here


Our Take
Replacing Iwata is going to be hard. Nintendo has a lot on its plate to consider. The company obviously wants to have success with NX and not have a repeat of the Wii U's poor sales. I see Miyamoto continuing to be involved heavily in game development, and not replacing Iwata. But I'm not entirely sure who else will take that role. Takeda makes sense with new hardware on the horizon, but that's only one part of what Nintendo will have to confront in the coming years. Whoever does replace Iwata will have a lot to uphold, and I doubt it's going to be an easy transition.