Cat May Be Trying To Bulldoze The Immovable

Caterpillar Inc. has long been in the forefront of efforts to create flexible factories that can respond to shifts in demand or technology. The Peoria-based company launched a $2.1 billion modernization plan in 1987 designed to save $ 420 million by 1993. Then last year, new CEO Donald V. Fites decided that Cat needed to be faster on its feet. So he decentralized the construction-equipment maker into 17 profit centers.

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