NANYUKI, Kenya/JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – It’s ride-hailing, farm style. Deere & Co. (DE.N) is teaming up with the “Uber of tractors” in Africa and betting on a future where farmers summon machines with the touch of a button.
The world’s leading farm equipment maker is outfitting its tractors with startup Hello Tractor’s technology, which allows farmers to hail the machines via an app, monitors the vehicles’ movements and transmits usage information such as fuel levels.
The aim is to help the U.S. company boost sales of it famous green and yellow John Deere tractors, a tough task in a continent with the world’s highest poverty rate and the least mechanized agricultural sector.
Deere is currently testing the technology – a small black box fitted beneath dashboards – on around 400 tractors in Ghana and Kenya. It told Reuters it plans to roll out the devices across Africa in the second half of this year, offering it to all contractors who buy its equipment on the…
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