The action camera maker came out with less-than-bodacious third quarter earnings on Wednesday, generating only $400 million in revenue and falling short of its own guidance of $430 million to $445 million. Adjusted earnings-per-share were 25 cents, missing projections by four cents, according to analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters.
A botched initial pricing of the company's new Hero4 Session camera -- which was reduced to $299 from $399 -- and excess inventory were to blame, according to management, but analysts are wondering whether the market for action cameras is reaching capacity. If so, GoPro's best days could already be behind it.
Shares dropped 17% in aftermarket trading on the earnings news. The stock has fallen 67% year-over-year to $25.50 from $77.10.
For the upcoming fourth quarter, GoPro is predicting around $500 million in sales, a slide of 17% year-over-year. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expect the company to earn an adjusted 44 cents a share on $552.25 million in sales.
On the conference call, GoPro CEO Nicholas Woodman shied away from euphemisms about performance and struck a straightforward tone. "Business in the third quarter was clearly more difficult than anticipated," he said.
While Woodman also discussed some of the company's other initiatives, including the GoPro mobile app and the GoPro Awards, which is geared toward generating more original content for GoPro's increasingly popular YouTube channel, there was no dampening the effect of the earnings.
"The initial sell through of the Hero4 Session was weak," Woodman said, acknowledging that the product launch caused "consumer confusion."
Following the results, analysts across the board downgraded their earnings outlook for GoPro. Some see opportunity in the price rout while others are choosing to steer clear of the stock. Here's what they had to say.
JMP Securities analyst Alex Gauna (Market Outperform; $90 PT)
"We reiterate our Market Outperform rating but reduce our estimates and price target to $90 from $105 on GoPro following a weak F3Q15 earnings report. Downside revenue of $400M (-5% q/q, +43% y/y, Street $433) led to an EPS miss of $0.25 (JMP $0.31, Street $0.29), and guidance also fell well short, with 4Q15 sales of $500-$550M (-17% y/y, Street $688M) expected to drive downside EPS of $0.35- $0.45 (Street $0.82). Management primarily attributed the result to poor demand and excess inventory around the Session that was mispriced when introduced over the summer, and, to a lesser degree, to the lack of a flagship refresh to the product line and FX headwinds in some geographies. While we are admittedly surprised and disappointed by the magnitude of the shortfall, the aftermarket indications of a -17% response on top of its -52% YTD slide (NASDAQ +8%) strikes us as pricing this in and as an exceptionally attractive entry point to buy the stock."
Barclay's analyst Joseph Wolf (Overweight; $40 PT)
"Hardware valuation with brand and content benefit down the line: Our mid-July upgrade was premature with the stock off 53% (vs. a flat S&P 500), since August 10th. 3Q results and 4Q guidance were negatively impacted by the weak launch of the new Hero4 Session and channel issues. However, we believe our underlying thesis remains intact and we see the combination of the core Hero cameras, 360 video, virtual reality, and drones broadening the story and the brand into 2016 and beyond. We have always felt that if you can get the hardware at a reasonable price, treat the brand and content as free upside, that the stock is attractive and that is where we see the stock today. We have cut our numbers and reduce our price target to $40, or 17x 2017E EPS of $2.36."
Pacific Crest analyst Brad Erickson (Sector Weight; N/A PT)
"Given the sharp after-hours sell-off, we see near-term downside as relatively limited in GPRO, with optimism potentially building into new product launches in 1H16. Over the longer term, we believe action cameras are saturating the U.S. market, which portends further risk to the multiple and, as such, keeps us on the sidelines."