Friday was a bad day for former startup darlings FitBit and GoPro with both companies disappointing investors.
GoPro, whose cameras for a while defined a new wave of adventure videos, announced a loss of $104 million dollars on the back of production issues and further disillusioned stockholders with a forecast of further poor sales in the upcoming holiday season.
Those shareholders have many reasons to be disillusioned with the camera maker’s shares reaching $98 two years ago after floating at $24. Today they are sitting at $11.
FitBit shareholders have suffered similarly, with the fitness band’s shares falling to eight dollars after listing at $20 almost two years ago. Their announcement of further problems on Friday saw the stock price dropping thirty percent on the day.
It may be easy to scorn investors in hindsight, but both companies were emblematic of a new generation of wearable technology and much of their problems today owes as much to them trying to stay ahead of the curve as it does from smartphones developing most of their products’ functionality.
The travails of FitBit and GoPro are typical of a time when new technology is changing business. Some companies shine brightly then fade while others have a rocky road to success. We’ll have to wait and see if FitBit and GoPro survive.