On February 7, 2014, GoPro, Inc. announced that it had plans to go public. The rules for filing for a confidential IPO under the JOBS Act means that a company must have less than a $1 billion in sales. So, apparently they are not quite a $1 billion company yet, but they have done extremely well since their launch in 2004.
There’s no doubt that GoPro, a San Mateo, CA based company, has tapped into a popular vein of personalized point-of-view imagery that allows individual users the ability to share their own adventures fast. GoPro has been a perfect fit for a tech-savvy, social network-based youth culture, and especially, the industry of action sports.
In a recent interview with Transworld Business, GoPro’s Media Relations Manager Chris Kinman said, “I think timing was a big factor there. We came along right when YouTube and social networks were really coming on strong and I think with different timing and in a different situation, maybe GoPro wouldn’t have risen like it did, but we were lucky enough to come out with a product that is so user friendly and so easily usable to create dynamic content that YouTube, Facebook, these social networks just helped us rise with them. Today we are an essential tool to sharing content…”
In 2013, the founder and CEO of GoPro Nick Woodman said the company had sold 2.3 million cameras, grossing $520 million. GoPro first came on the scene in 2004 with a 35 mm point-of-view film device. Surfers in particular, were keen on the product wearing the waterproof-cased GoPro to capture the action in the waves.
For several years, Woodman and his team proclaimed there was no need to go public. They’d seen sales increase since day one. They have had two rounds of investment since 2004 and now, stand to grow substantially with an IPO.
Today, it’s not uncommon to see snowboarders and skiers wearing their GoPro on their helmets, which looks somewhat ridiculous, but does create cool home videos. And there’s nothing like re-watching your own runs and then sharing the footy with others. Pro athletes have been using GoPro now for years to capture the essences of their sports, which also provide insights into developing new moves off jumps, and adding to the in-depth of footage already gathered for seasonal videos.
GoPro’s such a part of the action sports (and streetwear scene), they’ve been widely recognized on-site at trade shows such as Agenda, Outdoor Retailer Winter Market, and the upcoming fashion trade shows in Vegas.
Stay tuned for more information as GoPro moves towards it’s IPO.