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Hero 8 drives GoPro to second most profitable quarter ever

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Wall Street still not happy

GoPro Hero 8
GoPro Hero 8 Black.
Photo by Brent Rose for The Verge

Sales of the GoPro Hero 8 series helped the company post Q4 revenue of $528 million, up 40 percent compared to the same holiday quarter last year. It was the third best quarter in terms of revenue ever posted by the company, which founder and CEO Nick Woodman took public in 2014. Those numbers allowed the company to eke out a profit of $102 million for the October to December 2019 period, it’s second most profitable quarter ever, according to Woodman.

NPD research says GoPro captured 97 percent of every US dollar spent on action cameras (and 87 percent of units sold) in the fourth quarter, showing just how dominant GoPro remains in its niche market segment.

Nevertheless, GoPro stock is getting hammered in after-hours trading (down as much as 15 percent) for revenue coming in below even the low-end of GoPro’s own projections, and well below the consensus of analysts. Sales of the Hero 8 series started off strong, but softened in the month of December, according to GoPro.

Woodman is predicting a profitable year ahead, driven predominantly by sales of the current GoPro lineup while attracting more subscribers to pay for GoPro services — subscribers were up 69 percent year-over-year and 10 percent since last quarter. Woodman also teased a new “GoPro app experience” in 2020 “that addresses widespread pain points that anyone with a smartphone or a GoPro faces, one that we believe GoPro is uniquely positioned to solve.”

”Our roadmap is really exciting. It’s the heartbeat of GoPro, and it’s something that we do really, really well,” said Woodman on Wednesday’s Q4 investor call. “So I’m very confident that our multiyear roadmap in cameras and accessories will continue to excite. So there’s no taking the foot off the gas there whatsoever.”