GoPro files to go public
Here's the link to the actual SEC filing:
The founder may retire rich, and his venture-capital backers also make money, on the public offering. However, the actual return on capital in net present value, may turn out to be rather low, if one considers the unremunerated costs up to 2010 (the shareholder deficit) and the high risk factor.
Sales and profits shot up from 2010 to 2013, but profits are down from $35 million to $17 million between first quarter 2013 and first quarter 2014. Absent rock solid confidence that the POV market is not saturated, or that some stunning breakthrough will make existing owners buy new versions, the outlook may be little different than that of the small camera market at large.
Sooner or later, buyers learn that their POV footage will have none of the stunning wing-suit adventures or mermaids seen in the promotional videos, and efforts to best others' extreme stunts eventually lead to trauma. Famous last words: "Hey, your're just chicken. Just watch me do this!"
The venture capital backers, if savvy, may short-sell the stock soon after the issue date, when the price is at peak. As the price falls, they may make a handsome return.
Whatever the outcome, it is remarkable that a start-up "created" (or seized) market share in a niche in which large established companies that were too sluggish to roll out comparable products earlier.
Little guys, like me, stick to index funds or tripods.