1960 Four “New Generation of Power” tractor models steal the show at Deere Day in Dallas. Some 6,000 attend the sales meeting, including all U.S. and Canadian dealers.

1961 A new tractor and implement manufacturing plan nears completion in Rosario, Argentina. In Saran, near Orleans, France, construction starts on a new engine factory. In Moline, construction begins on the Deere & Company Administrative Center.

1962 John Deere marks its 125th anniversary. Construction begins on a product-engineering center at Dubuque, Iowa. Company buys a majority interest in South African Cultivators, a farm implement firm near Johannesburg.

1963 John Deere surpasses IH to become the world’s largest producer and seller of farm and industrial tractors and equipment. The company ventures into the consumer market, deciding to produce and sell lawn and garden tractors plus some attachments such as mowers and snow blowers.

1964 The Deere & Company Administrative Center opens. Designed by Eero Saarinen, it will win many architectural awards. Goals of the company and the principles behind its basic policies and procedures are outlined in the “Green Bulletins.”

1965 The John Deere Chemical Company, a fertilizer producer, is sold. It had been a subsidiary since 1962.

1966 A banner year. Total sales surpass $1 billion for the first time. Earnings reach a high of $78.7 million. Farm equipment sales set a record for the fourth straight year. Industrial equipment sales notch their largest ever year-to-year increase. Lawn and garden equipment sales rise 76 percent. Worldwide employment hits a record.

1967 The first industrial equipment sales branch opens in Baltimore.

1968 Color options appear for lawn and garden tractors. For a short time, traditional green and yellow are supplemented by dogwood white, and, for hood and trim, patio red, sunset orange, April yellow, and spruce blue.

1969 Overall sales level out due primarily to a downturn in farm equipment sales. Overseas operations expand but do not produce profits. The John Deere Insurance Group is created.

1970 Deere reorganizes its management structure to reflect growing diversification. Three operating divisions emerge: Farm Equipment and Consumer Products, U.S. and Canada; Farm Equipment and Consumer Products, Overseas; and Industrial Equipment, which has worldwide responsibilities.

1971 “Nothing Runs Like a Deere” advertises snowmobiles, a new product of the John Deere Horicon Works. The slogan lasts far longer than the snowmobile line, which is sold in 1984.

1972 Deere and Italian conglomerate Fiat end negotiations on a join venture that would have encompassed Deere’s overseas operations. Four new “Generation II” tractor models with operator enclosures-Sound-Gard bodies-reach the market. Farm equipment sales exceed $1 billion.

1973 Crop failures outside North America spur massive foreign buying of American grain. Commodity prices spurt. Farmers prosper; equipment demand erupts. John Deere total sales top $2 billion for the first time. Board decides to move towards more independent board as the first outside director is appointed.

1974 Unprecedented demand for John Deere products, especially farm equipment, continues, but capacity and other shortages appear. Inflation increases costs. The company starts its largest expansion program. More than $1 billion will be spent on new facilities by 1979.

1975 The John Deere Davenport Works, located in Davenport, Iowa, comes on-line, manufacturing industrial-equipment components.

1976 Equipment gets bigger, increasing farm productivity. Tractors average 40 percent more horsepower and 44 percent more weight than in 1970. Sales of both farm and industrial equipment triple and consumer-products sales soar fivefold since 1966.

1977 Agreement with Japanese manufacturer Yanmar authorizes sale of small tractors under the John Deere name. An updated Product Engineering Center is established in Waterloo. A stock-purchase plan for salaried employees begins.

1978 The award winning West Office Building addition to the Administrative Center, designed by Kevin Roche, Eero Saarinen’s successor, opens. Also new: Canadian headquarters in Grimsby, Ontario; John Deere Engine Works in Waterloo; and Atlanta sales branch offices.

1979 Employment reaches an all-time high of 65,392. Sales top $5 billion, earnings $310 million, both records.

Copyright© 2003 Deere & Company Archives

 

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