After his attempt at a dot-com company failed, Nicholas Woodman traveled to Australia and Indonesia in 2002 and realized that he could sell waterproof cameras. In 2003, Woodman founded Woodman Labs, the parent company of GoPro Inc. (GPRO). GoPro is a maker of some of the most versatile cameras in the world, capable of fitting into small spaces, sticking onto helmets, and generally surviving a harsh beating. They also develop mobile applications and video editing tools that allow users to create high-quality videos captured on their tiny cameras.

Additionally, GoPro has been moving into the virtual-reality and drone space to increase its product line, which they hope will increase their market share of the camera industry. However, GoPro does not have the first-mover advantage in the virtual-reality and drone industries, which could make it difficult for its brand to catch on in these industries. Although GoPro's shares have dropped significantly since its initial public offering (IPO) in 2014, the following largest GoPro shareholders are still keeping a tight grip on their investment.

In September 2004, GoPro developed and sold its first camera, the 35-mm HERO, which brought in sales of $350,000. Thereafter, Nicholas Woodman continued to innovate his product and led GoPro through a Series A financing round in 2011. Additionally, GoPro ended 2011 with over $200 million in revenue and 2012 with over $500 million in revenue. Thereafter, its revenue nearly doubled in 2013, and GoPro had revenue of $985.74 million. Moreover, GoPro's revenue grew by 64.34% to $1.62 billion in 2015, then shrunk to $1.18 billion in 2016. 

All share numbers are courtesy of GoPro's April 2017 Proxy Filing. 

1) Nicholas Woodman

Woodman serves as chief executive officer (CEO) and is the largest shareholder of GoPro.  Woodman owns 36.5 million Class B shares of GoPro, and owns an additional 30.7 shares through a family trust shared with his wife, Jill. As of Aug. 3, 2016, Woodman's net worth is $1.1 billion. Since Woodman's humble beginnings in his 1971 Volkswagen bus, where he drafted up patents and legal documents for Woodman Labs, he's helped GoPro grow into a billion-dollar technology company.

2) Tony Bates

Tony Bates is the former president of GoPro and current CEO of Growth Equity at Social Capital. Bates has held a number of powerful positions at numerous tech companies over the years, including senior vice president and general manager, at Cisco, CEO of Skype, and EVP of business development, strategy and evangelism at Microsoft. He was rumored to have left Microsoft following the company's decision to appoint Satya Nadella, and not him, as Steve Balmer's successor. Bates came to GoPro and worked as president, reporting directly to Woodman. After GoPro decided to shutter it's young entertainment division, Bates left the company, but remains on the board of directors. Bates owns a combined 2,717,262 shares of class A and B GoPro stock. 

3) Edward Gilhully

A co-founder of Sageview Capital and prominent technology investor, Ned Gilhully is a former director at GoPro and serves as a current director at a number of companies, including Alfresco, Avalara, Demandbase and MetricStream. As of GoPro's 2017 proxy statement, Gilhully owned 1,025,442 shares of Class A GoPro stock. 

4) Institutional Shareholders

As of October 2017, 33.3% of GoPro's shares were held by institutional and mutual fund investors. According to GoPro's 2017 proxy statement, The Vanguard Group is the largest institutional holder of GPRO, with 6.3 million shares, a 5.90% stake. It is one of the world's largest investment companies, with over $4 trillion in global assets under management (AUM) as of June. 30, 2017. Blackrock, Inc holds the second highest number of institutional shares, with 6.2 million, accounting for 5.84% of all class A stocks. 

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