GoPro get­ting its mojo back

The Hamilton Spectator - - CANADA & WORLD - SELINA WANG Bloomberg

GoPro is keep­ing its prom­ise to Wall Street.

The com­pany’s sec­ond-quar­ter re­sults beat an­a­lysts’ ex­pec­ta­tions, prov­ing that cost cuts are stem­ming losses and soft­ware up­dates are rein­vig­o­rat­ing de­mand for ac­tion cam­eras.

The maker of wear­able ac­tion cam­eras and drones is re­cov­er­ing af­ter a se­ries of prod­uct de­lays, re­calls, dis­ap­point­ing earn­ings and a long stock slide, prompt­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Ni­cholas Wood­man to elim­i­nate hun­dreds of jobs and aban­don an en­ter­tain­ment di­vi­sion. Now a leaner com­pany with a nar­rower vi­sion, GoPro is fo­cused on mak­ing its de­vices eas­ier to use and gear­ing up for the up­com­ing Hero6 cam­era and Fu­sion spher­i­cal cam­era roll­outs.

GoPro re­ported $296.5 mil­lion in rev­enue for the three months ended June 30, up 34 per cent from a year ear­lier, and sur­pass­ing an­a­lysts’ av­er­age es­ti­mate of $269.2 mil­lion. The San Ma­teo, Calif.based com­pany fore­cast thirdquar­ter rev­enue of as much as $310 mil­lion, beat­ing the av­er­age pro­jec­tion of $277.8 mil­lion.

“I be­lieve we are com­ing out of our two-year slump where we ra­tio­nal­ize our­selves in this smart­phone-cen­tric world,” Wood­man said in an in­ter­view. “We’ve cleaned up our busi­ness. It was in­ef­fi­cien­cies in the rest of our busi­ness that was cloud­ing the true pace and health.”

Wood­man at­tributes re­newed de­mand for the ac­tion-cam­eras to the com­pany’s ef­forts to make its de­vices eas­ier to use. He ac­knowl­edged that GoPro has long strug­gled to make up­load­ing and shar­ing videos sim­ple.

The com­pany re­cently rolled out an app fea­ture, called QuikS­to­ries, that au­to­mat­i­cally up­loads cap­tured video and ed­its it in a smart­phone. To reach new con­sumers, GoPro re­al­ized it needs to make its de­vices at­trac­tive to peo­ple ac­cus­tomed to the iPhone-easy process of cap­tur­ing and shar­ing con­tent, so Wood­man is repo­si­tion­ing its ac­tion-cam­eras as an “ex­ten­sion of the smart­phone it­self.”

GoPro has looked abroad for ex­pan­sion, as the mar­ket slows do­mes­ti­cally.

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