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GoPro lays off 200 people, shutters its aspiring media arm

The action-camera maker, struggling with weak sales, makes cuts to save more than $650 million in costs next year.

GoPro is eliminating 15 percent of its workforce, as the company struggles with sales of its action cameras and new drone.
Joshua Goldman/CNET

GoPro is cutting its workforce by 15 percent and closing its entertainment arm that aspired to turn the action-camera company into a media power.

GoPro plans to lay off 200 workers and cancel open positions, according to a company release Wednesday. It will close its entertainment division, which aimed to build a media company with original content inside GoPro. President Tony Bates will also step down by the end of the year, after joining the company from Microsoft in 2014.

GoPro said it would save about $650 million in operating costs in 2017 from the restructuring, on its path to become profitable next year.

GoPro has struggled in the last year, fighting weak sales and ratcheting back expectations. Earlier this month, it lowered revenue guidance going into the holiday-shopping season and reported a 40 percent drop in quarterly sales versus a year earlier.

The company tried to inject some optimism into its job-cut announcement Wednesday: Camera unit sales rose more than 35 percent from a year earlier during the week of Black Friday at leading US retailers, it said, citing internal data.