John Deere pays $305m for tech company

American giant John Deere has handed over a considerable wedge to purchase Blue River Technology, one of the leading machine learning companies in agriculture.

Deere has paid $305m (£231m) for the tech company, which helps farmers to reduce inputs, increase profits and care for the land, and is based in Sunnyvale, California.

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It has designed and integrated computer vision to agricultural sprayers to help growers reduce the use of herbicides by applying chemicals only where weeds are present.

“By using computer vision, robotics and machine learning, we can identify and make management decisions on every single plant in the field”, says Jorge Heraud, co-founder and CEO of Blue River Technology.

Deere hopes that the purchase will have similar benefits to its acquisition of NavCom back in 1999, which has allowed the Green Giant to become a leader in satellite guided systems, machine optimisation and connectivity.