Nintendo Profits Per Employee Outstrip Goldman Sachs' Best Ever Year

17 September 2008

TOKYO: According to research carried out by the Financial Times, Japanese video games publisher Nintendo – whose brands include Super MarioGalaxy and Pokemon – will notch a higher level of profit-per-employee this year than Goldman Sachs made last year, or at any time previously.

Moreover, judged by the same criterion, Nintendo even outstrips water-walking Google.

Based on the investment bank's accounts, before deduction of tax and pay, the average Goldman employee generated $1.24 million (€876.02m; £6966.95m) in profit last year. But each averaged compensation of $660,000 in 2007 – absorbing around half of the profit they generated.

Whereas Nintendo's salaried workforce – slightly less than three thousand strong – took home a comparatively meagre $90,900 each while averaging a net income of $1.6m per head.

As for Google, if the majority of its overhead expenses are salaries, the equivalent earnings on the Mountain View campus would have been around $626,000 in 2007.

The reasons for Nintendo's success? Humility, the FT says. And outsourcing.

The newspaper points to Goldman's 'Masters of the Universe' ethos; then to that of the Japanese firm which, says one long-serving Nintendo employee, is "not experiencing success, just increased overtime".

Not a comment you're likely to hear in any of Wall Street's watering holes.

Until this week!

Data sourced from Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff