I wish you all a very happy New Year.
Looking back over the past year, I feel that there are clear signs that big changes have been made as a result of the creation of a highly efficient new structure incorporating all of Capcom's business areas. Both our Digital Contents and Amusement Equipment businesses have greatly increased their profitability.
One of the causes of this development has been the evolution in the Consumer business to respond to the major changes that have resulted from the generational shift in games hardware. In fusing together game contents with Internet services, the games industry now finds itself in a period of great change as the business model is transiting from 'package sales' to 'digital distribution'. In order to deal with this transformation in the environment, we have been reviewing our development, marketing, and sales methods, and, as a result of our drive to concentrate on digital download sales of catalogue and new products as well as the distribution of add-on contents, we have greatly increased the weight of digital download contents in our overall sales mix.
Current-generation game consoles, so to say 'PlayStation®4', 'Xbox One®', 'Wii U', are likely to continue to drive innovation by exploiting the resources of the Internet. For example, 'PlayStation®4' has now made it possible for each player to realize his or her own game strategy whilst watching a worldwide user playing game in real-time. Moreover, if users are attracted by the game content whilst watching a video imagery, they can purchase the game with a one-click download. It is also possible now for users to experience all sorts of other nongaming content from the comfort of their own homes. Capcom is riding this big wave, and we are striving to ensure that we can respond to this new game business model.
We are also continuing to place great emphasis on our fundamental 'Single content – Multiple usage' strategy. In addition to the video, anime, and goods that we have been developing to date, we are also expanding the exposure of our contents in theme parks and other real locations, and thereby making great efforts both to increase the brand value of our game contents and to increase the numbers of our users at the same time. Some of our businesses, including our amusement equipment and arcade operations, have been confronted with difficult operating environments recently, but we are confident that through the effective exploitation of a multiple usage strategy across all areas, we will be able to break out of this challenging situation.
The external environment in which Capcom operates is continuously undergoing huge changes, but we anticipate that the games market as a whole will continue to expand. By being flexible and responsive to these new changes, we believe that the coming year will be one of significant further growth for Capcom and that we can change the challenges we face into major business opportunities.
I would like to take this opportunity to express my hope that we will continue to enjoy the valuable support and guidance we have received from all of you, our stakeholders, into the future.
President and Chief Operating Officer (COO)