GoPro Falls as Camera Said Linked to Schumacher Accident

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GoPro Inc. shares fell today after reports linked the sports-camera maker to the ski accident of retired race car driver Michael Schumacher, sparking safety questions about the use of the cameras.

The stock declined 9.9 percent to $76.67 at the close in New York following publication of the reports in the New York Post and other outlets. Schumacher, 45, a seven-time Formula One champion, crashed while skiing in Meribel in the French Alps on Dec. 29, suffering contusions to the brain as well as hemorrhaging.

The reports today said Schumacher’s son blames his father’s condition on the GoPro camera that was mounted to the race car driver’s helmet at the time of the incident.

Jeff Brown, a spokesman for San Mateo, California-based GoPro, said in a e-mail that the company is trying to get more information about the reports before issuing a statement.

GoPro, led by Chief Executive Officer Nicholas Woodman, went public in June. The shares have risen more than threefold, fueled by sales of its tiny video cameras that adventurers strap onto their bodies to record their exploits.

Yet the stock has been volatile, including declining 6.9 percent earlier this month after its founders donated some of their holdings to establish a charitable foundation, raising concern that releasing more shares might weigh on prices.

“A move of this magnitude is common for GoPro,” said Alex Gauna, an analyst at JMP Securities in San Francisco, who has the equivalent of a buy rating on the stock. “It’s also very clearly stated in GoPro’s risk factors that consumers should be cautious when engaging in risky activity.”