Hiroshi Yamauchi, former president of Nintendo, has died at the age of 85 to pneumonia.
The Japanese business man ran the company for 53 years between 1949 and 2002 and was the second largest shareholder at the time of his death. The NES, SNES, N64, Game Boy, GameCube were all launched during Yamauchi’s time as president, before he handed over the role to the current president Satoru Iwata in 2002.
Yamauchi played a huge role in Nintendo’s rise to the video game giant it is today, Ian Livingstone, co-founder of Games Workshop and former chairman of publisher Eidos, said this of him:
“Hiroshi Yamauchi transformed a run-of the-mill trading card company into an entertainment empire in video games. He understood the social value of play, and economic potential of electronic gaming. Most importantly he steered Nintendo on its own course and was unconcerned by the actions of his competitors. He was a true visionary.”