Nintendo (任天堂 nintendō; NTDOY) is a Japanese company that develops their own video game consoles, such as the Nintendo 3DS and Wii. They are the creators of many popular series, including Super Mario Bros., The Legend of Zelda, Pokémon, as well as the Kid Icarus series, alongside many more.
The company was originally founded on September 23rd, 1889 by Fusajiro Yamauchi to produce handmade Hanafuda cards for use in a Japanese playing card game. Eventually, in 1929, the company was passed on to Yamauchi's son-in-law, Sekiryo Kaneda. He took up the Yamauchi name when he married Fusajiro's daughter, Tei Yamauchi. The company continued on to make Hanafuda cards. However, Kaneda decided to retire in 1949 and passed Nintendo down to his grandson, Hiroshi Yamauchi. Little did he know that Hiroshi would change the focus of Nintendo for the best. In the late 70's, Yamauchi decided to expand Nintendo into the United States, as arcade machines were becoming very popular. However, his plan did not go over as well as he had hoped. Many children in the U.S. did not show much interest in Nintendo's products, like Sheriff or Radar Scope. Nintendo started to lose money, so in desperation, Yamauchi turned to one of his employees, Shigeru Miyamoto, for help.
He only called Miyamoto in because he was the only employee who had any time on his hands. Yamauchi asked Miyamoto to make a product for the arcade machine that would become a best-seller. Shigeru Miyamoto worked on the project he was thinking of for a while: Donkey Kong. When it entered the North American market, it did in fact become a best-seller. Nintendo started moving into video games and assigned Gunpei Yokoi to make a handheld console for enjoyment while traveling. Thus, Yokoi made the Game & Watch, which became unusually popular in both Japan and the United States. Nintendo then made the Nintendo Entertainment System, which grew very popular among children, the most popular game being Super Mario Bros. The release of the system forever changed the focus of video game development from quantity to quality and cemented the company's place in history. Aside from video games, Nintendo is also the majority owner of the Seattle Mariners, a Major League Baseball team, which is now handled by Howard Lincoln. In 2002, Hiroshi Yamauchi stepped down from office, giving the position to Satoru Iwata.