GoPro exits drone market and cuts jobs after poor 2017 earnings

09 January, 2018, 00:26 | Author: Regina Lloyd
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GoPro said it's cutting more than 20 per cent of its global workforce and putting an end to its drone business after a disappointing fourth quarter. The camera maker also confirmed the report of job cuts we heard about last week, but there could be even bigger changes in store for GoPro than just another round of restructuring. But it said a hostile regulatory environment in Europe and the United States, and extremely competitive market, makes staying in the business untenable.

In its statement today, GoPro also cited the hard regulatory regimes in the U.S. and Europe as the reason why it doesn't think the drone market will be lucrative in the long term.

There have also been issues with some products, including the recall of its Karma aerial camera in 2016, after unexpected crashes. It had entered a partnership with DJI, according to Tech Crunch, before DJI backed out, leaving GoPro to develop the Karma drone on its own.

Preliminary results show the company had fourth quarter revenue of $340 million, down $200 million, or 37 percent from what it reported in the fourth quarter a year earlier.

"GoPro is committed to turning our business around in 2018", Woodman said in the statement.

GoPro issued a sales warning for its fourth quarter results of $340m (£250m) for the three months to end of December - down 37 per cent on what it previously turned over for the same period past year. Given the concerns about less expensive alternatives eating away at GoPro's action-camera market share, this price cut is not a good development. Later in the day, GoPro CEO Nick Woodman told Bloomberg the company would be open to sale, but isn't actively shopping itself.

GoPro said it would continue to provide technical and customer support for those who had already boughts a Karma drone. "We expect that going forward, our roadmap coupled with a lower operating expense model will enable GoPro to return to profitability and growth in the second half of 2018".


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