GoPro’s IPO priced at $24 per share, says underwriter-Reuters

(Reuters) – Wearable sports camera maker GoPro Inc’s initial public offering was priced at $24 per share, an underwriter said, valuing the company at up to $2.96 billion.

GoPro’s IPO raised about $427.2 million, after the offering of 17.8 million class A shares was priced at the top end of the expected range of $21-$24 per share.

The San Mateo, California-based company sold 8.9 million shares in the IPO, while the rest were offered by selling stockholders.

The company sells just one camera design under the Hero brand, which retails for between $199.99 and $399.99, and is extremely popular among athletes and action enthusiasts such as surfers, divers, skateboarders and cyclists.

Olympic gold medal winning snowboarder Shaun White and 11-time world champion surfer Kelly Slater are some of the well known names to have endorsed the company’s cameras.

GoPro’s founder and Chief Executive Officer Nicholas Woodman and his family are the company’s biggest stockholders, with a total stake of 49 percent.

GoPro is the first consumer-electronic company to go public since the 2011 debut of headphones maker Skullcandy Inc SKUL.O.

“There probably hasn’t been a consumer electronics brand as dominant as GoPro has been in its category since the early days of the iPod or the iPad,” Dougherty & Co analyst Charlie Anderson said in a note to clients.

GoPro plans to use the proceeds from the offering for debt repayment and investment purposes. The company had about $110.7 million in debt as of March 31.

GoPro, whose cameras are used by the Discovery Channel and ESPN, reported a rise of 8 percent in revenue to $235.7 million for the three months ended March 31. Net income fell to $11 million from $23 million.

GoPro hired Tony Bates, former Microsoft Corp MSFT.O executive vice president of business development, as its president early this month.

The company is expected to debut on the Nasdaq on Thursday under the symbol “GPRO”.

J.P. Morgan, Citigroup and Barclays are the lead underwriters of the IPO.