Nintendo hires a networking chief to shore up a weak spot

Nintendo of America has hired Duncan Orrell-Jones as its new senior vice president of network business, a job that the company sorely needed to fill.

The former Disney Interactive veteran is in charge of online strategy for Nintendo’s 3DS and Wii U consoles. That’s important because Nintendo is behind rivals Sony (with its PlayStation Network) and Microsoft (Xbox Live) in pursuing online gaming services. The appointment shows that every game company has to pay attention to online gaming.

With its new Wii U arriving later this year, Nintendo has promised more robust online features. And it is trying to get 3DS handheld owners to purchase retail games through its eShop store.

Orrell-Jones reports to Nintendo of America president and chief operating officer Reggie Fils-Aime.

“Duncan Orrell-Jones brings knowledge and hands-on experience to Nintendo that will help us develop and implement long-term digital initiatives for our systems,” Fils-Aime said. “By creating this new position, we’re demonstrating our commitment to the expansion of our online business, and Duncan is the perfect person for the job.”

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