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John Deere launches program to collaborate with start-ups

To enhance and deepen its interaction with start-up companies whose technology could add value for its customers, John Deere is launching the Startup Collaborator program. It will be housed within the company's Intelligent Solutions Group.

“Our focus for the Startup Collaborator is specifically on start-ups that want to work with John Deere in real-world customer environments to determine the technology readiness of their innovations,” says John Stone, senior vice president of Deere’s Intelligent Solutions Group.

According to Stone, the Startup Collaborator provides Deere and start-ups the flexibility to test innovative technologies with customers and dealers without a formal business relationship. In addition, start-ups gain affiliation with and mentoring from Deere's expertise in precision agriculture.

“Innovation has been at the heart of John Deere for more than 180 years,” adds Stone. “The Startup Collaborator welcomes innovative companies into a program that could help us drive improved results for our customers.”

The following three start-ups are already a part of the program:

  1. Bear Flag Robotics. Based in California, this company is developing autonomous technology for tractors and implements to reduce operating expense while increasing worker safety.
  2. Hello Tractor. This Nigerian company, which has a strong understanding of agriculture in Sub-Sarahan Africa, has developed an application to manage tractor fleets for small holder farmers.
  3. Taranis. Based in Israel, this company has developed an automated field scouting service based on sub-millimeter aerial imagery using deep learning problem detection and analysis.

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