Deere to Buy Road-Equipment Maker Wirtgen for $5.2 Billion Cash

Deere & Co. plans to buy Wirtgen Group, a German maker of road-construction equipment, for 4.6 billion euros ($5.2 billion).

The deal will be in cash and establish Deere’s “leadership position” in the road building industry and expand the reach of John Deere construction equipment, according to a statement from the company. Wirtgen, a privately held company, has about 8,000 employees and sells products in more than 100 countries.

“Spending on road construction and transportation projects has grown at a faster rate than the overall construction industry and tends to be less cyclical,” Max Guinn, president of Deere’s worldwide construction and forestry division, said in the statement.

Deere plans to keep Wirtgen’s existing brands, management and distribution network, and the deal has been approved by the board of directors, the company said. Deere will hold a conference call for investors at 10 a.m. Eastern time.

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