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John Deere and Hitachi terminate joint venture agreements

John Deere today announced an agreement with Hitachi Construction Machinery to terminate the manufacturing and marketing agreements of the Deere-Hitachi joint venture. John Deere and Hitachi will enter into new license and supply agreements that will allow John Deere to continue to purchase, manufacture and distribute its current line of Deere-branded excavators in the Americas.

As a result of the new agreements, the following changes will be effective Feb. 28, 2022, subject to regulatory approval.

John Deere will acquire Deere-Hitachi joint ventures in Kernersville, North Carolina; Indayatuba, Brazil; and Langley, British Columbia

John Deere will continue to produce Deere-branded construction and forestry excavators currently produced at three Deere-Hitachi plants. Production of Hitachi excavators will be discontinued at these plants. John Deere will continue to offer a full portfolio of excavators under a supply agreement with Hitachi.

John Deere’s agreement to market Hitachi-branded construction excavators and mining equipment in North and South America will end; Hitachi will take over distribution and support of these products.

“For many years, John Deere and Hitachi have maintained a mutually successful partnership in North and South America,” said John Stone, president of John Deere Construction & Forestry and Power Systems. “As we open a new chapter on Deere-designed excavators, we remain committed to supporting our customers today and tomorrow.”

“Looking to the future, John Deere will build on our heritage of quality and performance and accelerate the development of advanced technologies and equipment that meet the fundamental need for smarter, safer and more environmentally friendly construction so our customers can shape the world of tomorrow,” Stone continued.

John Deere and Hitachi began their supply chain partnership in the early 1960s; then, in 1988, the companies formed a Deere-Hitachi joint venture to manufacture excavators in Kernersville, North Carolina. In 1998, Deere-Hitachi expanded its relationship to include the production of rotary forestry machines at Deere-Hitachi Specialty Products in Langley, British Columbia. John Deere and Hitachi have combined their marketing and sales efforts in the Americas. In 2011, excavator production was expanded with the opening of the Deere-Hitachi Brazil plant in Indayatuba, Brazil.

The agreement requires certain necessary regulatory approvals as well as certain other customary closing conditions.