i3 - November/December 2018 - 8

Tech

Cindy Loffler Stevens

I N N OVATO R

John Stone
Driving Digital Farming at Deere
John Stone is senior vice president at Deere
and Company's Intelligent Solutions Group

H

Q Can you talk about the cross section of

farming and technology?
A Our world is changing, from the rapidly
increasing population and globalization of
resources, to the impact of human interaction on the land. In fact, the Global Harvest
Initiative predicts we'll have about 2.5 billion
more people to feed on this planet by 2050.
These changes are requiring farmers to
produce significantly higher crop production,
profitably and sustainably, while they deal
with a declining rural workforce. This is only
going to be possible by bringing precision ag
technologies to the farm. Many outside the
farming world might not be aware that Deere
has been investing in leading edge technologies for many years. Automation, connectivity,
artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning
8

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2018

are a few key technologies we're focused on
to build a continually smart, evolving and
more efficient farm.

Q How has your business model changed?
A Getting the most out of a farming operation

has always been challenging, but today's
farmers face conditions that dictate a new
level of effort and concern for their operations, such as changing weather patterns
and the availability of arable land. As the
challenges became more pronounced,
farmers could take advantage of technology
advances to optimize farming operations.
Deere has always partnered closely with
farmers to advance the use of technology
on the farm and over time, it became clear
that customers needed more and more

insights to solve their needs. A clear opportunity emerged for Deere to drive advancements in technology to bring new answers
to these evolving customer needs. It meant
bringing the tech revolution to the farm to
work in combination with Deere machinery
to deliver economic impact to the farmer.
As a result, Deere made a strategic
investment to ensure its role in the technology revolution on the farm with the
ISG. Outside of Deere's five traditional
product platforms and operating globally,
ISG has roughly a thousand engineers,
developers, data scientists and computer
scientists who design and develop the
hardware and software that make Deere
machines smarter, more precise and more
productive. ISG helped capitalize on the
I T I S I N N O VAT I O N

Photography by Seth Lowe

e is leading a digital renaissance for farming.
Since his appointment to the position in 2016, he
has been leading the company's efforts to deliver
innovative technologies that enhance the performance of John Deere equipment and allow customers to improve their operational performance
and better manage costs.
Stone joined Deere & Company in 2002 as a project manager and
has since held numerous executive leadership positions at the company. Prior to joining Deere, Stone worked for General Electric and
before that was an officer in the U.S. Army. He has a B.S. degree in
mechanical engineering from the United States Military Academy
and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Deere & Company provides advanced products and services to its
customers who cultivate, harvest, transform, enrich and build upon
the land to meet the world's dramatically increasing need for food,
fuel, shelter and infrastructure. Stone says, "This year, we surpassed
a significant milestone of having our precision agriculture technology adopted in more than 100 countries and have well over 100 million acres engaged in our digital ecosystem."
i3 had the opportunity to learn about Deere's latest advances
and their plans for CES 2019.



i3 - November/December 2018

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Contents
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i3 - November/December 2018 - Contents
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