Troubled camera maker GoPro isn’t winning in any of its target markets and may not have enough cash to get back on top, according to one Wall Street analyst, who says the company’s stock may be overvalued by one-third.
GoPro’s sales slid 27% last year as consumers increasingly opted to film their snowboarding, skateboarding, and whitewater rafting adventures with action cams from competitors. And the company’s new Karma drone and 360-degree camera failed to generate much excitement or sales. Still, the company’s expenses rose 20%, largely due to ballooning headcount.
“We expect GoPro to continue to struggle fundamentally,” Goldman Sachs analyst Simona Jankowski wrote. “We think GoPro’s main challenge is that its core action camera market is largely saturated, as it has not attracted a significantly broader and more mainstream audience.”
Jankowski lowered her rating on the stock from “neutral” to “sell,” though the change came after the stock had already declined 36% over the prior year. Shares of GoPro dropped another 8% on Monday to an all-time low close of $8.14 after Jankowski’s report came out. The Goldman analysts joins at least eight others on Wall Street recommending investors dump the stock.
GoPro has already said it will cut 15% off its staff and lower its operating expenses by about $100 million. Such struggles have unfortunately become all too common for many faddish hardware companies. Fitbit (FIT) saw its sales plummet 19% in the fourth quarter, while rival wearable maker Jawbone was nearly liquidated. Smartwatch maker Pebble ended its run after Fitbit snapped up some of the company’s assets for a song. And wearable camera maker ION Worldwide filed for bankruptcy.
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Even after GoPro’s stock slide, the company could lose another one-third of its value, Jankowski predicted.
In the stock market, GoPro (GPRO) was trading at a value of $1 billion that about equaled its projected sales of $1.25 billion for 2017 according to Wall Street analysts. But similarly struggling gadget maker Fitbit trades at less than half the value of its projected 2017 sales and in the past the stocks of hardware makers like Nokia (NOK) and Dell bottomed out at much less than half of projected sales, Jankowski noted.
GoPro also faces a challenge in recovering because it is using up its cash at a rapid rate and trying to cut expenses. For its newer products, the drone and 360-degree camera, GoPro must compete with companies that have more plentiful resources, Jankowski wrote, pointing to DJI in drones and Samsung, Nokia, and Nikon in cameras.