Why GoPro And Red Bull Should Not Merge

 

Earlier this month GoPro released their newest product, the GoPro Hero4 Session, in what some would argue is an act of desperation coming from a company that is now surrounded by fierce competition and brilliant innovation.

When GoPro was founded in 2002, it took the world by storm, becoming one of the first companies to provide society with a camera of such high-definition at an affordable price. Fast-forward to now and the industry has grown profoundly, much to the misfortune of GoPro.

Companies like Contour, EyeSee360 and VIEVU are all producing similar products and have adapted to cheaper manufacturing, providing a similar, but cheaper product for consumers.

GoPro may now be moving to the unfortunate situation where consumers buy their product simply for the brand name.

Recently, Romain Dillet from TechCrunch wrote an interesting article on how GoPro may be able to avoid and combat these unpromising times. It involves a merge with Red Bull and highlights the similarities the two companies share, as well as a suggestion that the two focus on the media industry.

The article has a great deal of evidence to support the idea, like the fact that scrolling through all of GoPro’s promotional video clips shows that almost all of the extreme athletes featured in the footage have the Red Bull logo on their clothing.

In a much more elementary world, GoPro and Red Bull joining forces makes sense, as we saw Pixar, who started out designing computers, transform into the animated film powerhouse it is today.

The problem that lies between this idea and reality is that there does not appear to be any reason whatsoever for Red Bull to gamble on GoPro. Red Bull has already made inroads on a media platform, creating their own media company known as Red Bull Media House.

The company owns and runs the already popular Red Bull TV, Servus TV and Terra Mater.

Red Bull TV focuses on broadcasting live global events over a range of sports and is accessible online or in their very own mobile app. Servus TV is a European cable and satellite station broadcasted in Austria, Germany and Switzerland, focusing not only on sport, but lifestyle and entertainment. Terra Mater Factual Studios is a product focused on factual documentaries involving wildlife, nature, science and history.

In terms of GoPro merging with Red Bull, it would appear that Red Bull would have nothing to gain in such a relationship. Red Bull already use GoPro’s camera technology for their filming, but apart from that, there doesn’t seem to be any other benefits for the company to take GoPro on board.

If Red Bull were to have any weakness it would be the poor reviews and opinions regarding their energy drinks. While there are many competitors rising in the field of the energy drink, Red Bull still currently reigns supreme. As for the health controversy, although energy drinks have been proven to contain more sugar and caffeine than coke and any other soft drinks, the company has been able to combat the bad publicity with the launch of Red Bull Sugar-Free and Red Bull Zero.

While the merge may seem practical, it would be solely in the interest of GoPro’s survival and would have no direct impact on Red Bull and their success.

This is not to say that a merge isn’t completely out of the question, however, Red Bull in its current position simply does not have any incentive to take a chance.