Nintendo president Satoru Iwata wasn't able to attend this year's E3 due to health problems. They were kept vague at the time, but we now know what the concern was, and it sounds bit more serious than first thought.
While initial word from the company said he was skipping the trade show due to the advice of his physician, a statement issued by Nintendo tonight provides more information:
Thank you very much for your continued extraordinary support of us. I am Satoru Iwata, President of the company.
Today, there is one thing that I would like to share with you.
Recently, as the result of one of my routine physical examinations, an issue was detected. Following a more detailed examination, a growth was found in my bile duct.
In general, it is said that a bile duct growth can be difficult-to-treat, partly because of the difficulty of detecting it early. In my case, luckily, it was detected very early and I had no symptoms.
I was counselled that removal at an early stage would be the desirable medical option. Therefore I had surgery last week, and I came through it well, as predicted.
I have already resumed my business by email and by other means, but it is anticipated that a little more time is needed for me to return to my regular work schedule.
As a result, I have no choice but to miss the company's very important activity, the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders, to be held this month. As the president of the company, I regret that I cannot attend the meeting. However, I understand that I have to prioritise my medical treatment and to recover as soon as possible so that I will again be able to do my best to help the company to grow. I hope that you understand.
Best wishes, Mr. Iwata. Here's hoping for a swift recovery.