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Karma Struggles: GoPro Lays Off Hundreds of Employees
By Joseph Tepper, January 7, 2018 @ 12:30 PM (EST)
Source: TechCrunch

Employees at GoPro are finding out that Karma is a, well, you know.

GoPro is laying off up to 300 employees—largely in the company’s aerial division—amidst the struggling Karma drone, according to a report from TechCrunch. Laid-off employees received a letter explaining the decision came about to “better align [GoPro’s] resources with business requirements.”

GoPro’s Karma drone has failed to meaningfully compete with the likes of Chinese company DJI, which produces the Spark, Mavic Pro, and Phantom models. DJI controls a whopping 70 percent of the consumer drone market (impressive and daunting, since their drones might just be Chinese spies).

GoPro’s attempt to take over some of that market share was plagued from the beginning. The company officially announced the Karma in September 2016 after a long build-up and tease campaign. Just days later DJI unveiled the Mavic Pro—with largely better specs and features.

Then, just two months later, GoPro recalled the Karma with reports that the drones would lose power mid-flight and fall out of the sky. It wasn’t until February 2017 that the drone became available again.

It is unclear whether the mass layoffs are a sign that GoPro is abandoning aerial imaging entirely, or the move is another attempt to increase profitability in the short term. After losing $373 million dollars in 2016, GoPro laid off hundreds of employees, which increased late 2017 revenue by 34 percent and their stock by more than 20 percent.

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