GoPro needs new hit badly; shares dive after results

LOS ANGELES — Action-camera manufacturer GoPro badly needs the new Hero 5 camera and Karma drone to click with customers.

The company announced dismal third-quarter results Thursday, swinging to a loss of $104 million, or 74 cents a share, from $18.7 million in profit a year ago. Revenue dropped 40% to $240 million.

CEO Nick Woodman additionally said he expected  fourth quarter sales to be lower than expected, due to production issues for two new products, the Hero 5 camera and Karma drone.

The stock, which closed at $12.57 in normal trading, fell 20.02% after hours, to $9.55.  Shares have lost 52% in the past year.

GoPro had no new products released in the third quarter, and just replenished its lineup for the first time since July 2015, with the new Hero 5 camera and Karma drone, which sell for $500 and $1,100 respectively (or $800 for the drone without the camera.)

Before GoPro went public in 2014, the tiny camera was insanely popular with the action sports crowd of surfers, skate boarders and cyclers, who used it to get awesome footage that couldn't be captured on other devices. But advancements in the smartphone camera, and popularity of higher-end mirrorless and DSLR cameras, proved to be an obstacle.

In 2015 GoPro introduced its smallest, lightest camera ever, the Hero 4 Session, which was poorly received at its initial price of $399. Even with discounts, first to $299 then $199, GoPro has been struggling to regain momentum.

The company's hopes rested on the burgeoning drone market, as a way for the action sports fans who always loved GoPro cameras to photograph their images, from above, with camera quality at a higher level than seen on many drones from rivals like DJI and Yuneec.

GoPro said its guidance for the upcoming fourth quarter would be for $625 million in revenue, and for the full year $1.25 billion to $1.3 billion in sales.

Follow USA TODAY's Jefferson Graham on Twitter, @jeffersongraham. 


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