By Robb M. Stewart

 

Deere & Co. has agreed to buy a Silicon Valley-based startup for $250 million in a bid to accelerate the development of autonomous technology on farms.

The agriculture-equipment company said Thursday it signed a definitive agreement to buy Bear Flag Robotics, a company founded in 2017 to develop autonomous driving technology that is compatible with existing machines.

The move is in line with John Deere's long-term strategy to create smarter machines with advanced technology, the company said.

"Deere views autonomy as an important step forward in enabling farmers to leverage their resources strategically to feed the world and create more sustainable and profitable operations," said Jahmy Hindman, chief technology officer at John Deere.

Deere said it first started working with Bear Flag in 2019 as part of its startup collaborator program, and since then Bear Flag has deployed its autonomous solution on a limited number of farms and tractors in the U.S.

 

Write to Robb M. Stewart at robb.stewart@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 05, 2021 13:28 ET (17:28 GMT)

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