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Fuse Technologies Year-In-Review: An Exciting Launch In 2013 With More To Come in 2014

July 2013 marked the launch of AGCO’s new global precision agriculture initiative, FuseTM Technologies.  The Fuse strategy and customer benefits were shared with the world at several key events, involving customers and dealers.

AGCO’s Advanced Technology Solutions (ATS) leadership unveiled this new strategy at a precision agriculture conference in Lleida, Spain on July 9 and again the following week in Springfield, Illinois at North America’s largest precision agriculture tradeshow, InfoAg.  The launch was well-received globally, garnering broad exposure on the international business wires as well as with regional media.

AGCO Fuse “lunch and learn” under the shade of the Fuse Pavilion at Farm Progress Show

Fuse “lunch and learn” under the shade of the Fuse Pavilion at Farm Progress Show

Following these launches, Fuse Technologies had a significant presence at the 2013 Farm Progress Show in Decatur, IL, in August. The team hosted two well-attended information sessions during which a panel of AGCO experts and local personalities presented the Fuse strategy and other precision farming topics.

Fuse also had a noteworthy presence at Agritechnica in Hanover, Germany, in November which included the debut of a 3D, interactive smart farm visual that brought the Fuse connected strategy to life for visitors to the AGCO area in Hall 9. Fuse experts were stationed in each brand area to further explain how Fuse helps customers within each brand, and Fuse also had a presence in the Smart Farming exhibit hall.

The Fuse interactive smart farm display at Agritechnica, operated by a video game platform

The Fuse interactive smart farm display at Agritechnica, operated by a video game platform

In the APAC region, AGCO ATS dealers gathered in New Zealand in August for comprehensive training in AGCO’s technology offerings. The Fuse South America launch began with the annual dealer meetings in that region: Massey Ferguson dealers in Argentina in November, and Valtra dealers in Brazil in December. The South America customer launch will soon follow with a Fuse presence at regional trade shows starting in early 2014.

An AgCommand website release with new features and updates went live in November, with updates for the mobile app launched this December. There were several product launches at Agritechnica as well: TaskDoc which is now available on select Massey Ferguson combines, VarioDoc availability for select Fendt combines, and Fendt Section Control for most new Profi Plus tractors.

There have also been numerous activities for AGCO employees and dealers to learn about the new Fuse strategy and get excited about how we are delivering on our vision to provide high-tech solutions for professional farmers feeding the world.

What’s next for Fuse Technologies? ATS recently launched the Fuse Contact Center, a dedicated, global customer support center, first opened in North America with more regions coming on board in early 2014. The Fuse team will continue to provide ongoing support of the strategy from product development to marketing and communications. Be sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter for the latest Fuse news!

To learn more about AGCO’s on and off board technologies and the Fuse Technologies strategy, visit http://www.agcocorp.com/products/precision_farming.aspx.

Fuse Technologies Strategy Presented to Massey Ferguson And Valtra Dealers as Part of South America Launch

By Rafael Antonio Costa

AGCO’s South American Massey Ferguson and Valtra Dealers gathered recently in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Salvador, Brazil, for a comprehensive look at FuseTM Technologies: AGCO’s global precision farming technology strategy to provide farmers with seamless integration and connectivity across their operations.  By taking a more open approach to incorporating technology across the industry, Fuse will lead the way in providing solutions for the mixed fleet, multi partner farms of tomorrow.  Fuse provides new tools that allow the farmer to do this efficiently and effectively.

AGCO’s Matt Rushing and Eric Hansotia helped share the Fuse vision at the Massey Ferguson dealer training event in Argentina, with Bruce Hart and Rob Lindgren presenting to Valtra in Brazil.

AGCO’s Matt Rushing and Eric Hansotia helped share the Fuse vision at the Massey Ferguson dealer training event in Argentina, with Bruce Hart and Rob Lindgren presenting to Valtra in Brazil.

The Fuse message resonated with the South America dealers because there is arguably more coordination of machines in this region than anywhere else in the world. The capabilities Fuse Technologies is deploying over the next several years will ensure the machines are “talking” to each other, allowing the farmer to strip out the waste during the farming process.

Leading the way in the efforts to communicate the strategy, and enhancing the dealer’s knowledge base, is AGCO South America’s Advanced Technology Solutions (ATS) Product Marketing Manager, Rafael Antonio Costa.  Rafael was pleased with the number of dealers that attended the events—approximately 650 total—and the response to the Fuse Technologies strategy:

“The South American Fuse Technologies launches were very well received, and set the stage for what is to come in the next 3-5 years for AGCO’s dealers and customers.  It was encouraging to see the enthusiasm after the initial presentation, and the conversation that was generated as a result of the launch.  The dealer network in South America is professional and knowable of the technology solutions available to our customers.  This is imperative as we keep our farmers moving forward with new and innovative technologies.”

This recent dealer training reflects AGCO’s commitment to and global emphasis on precision farming technology, recently launched as Fuse™ Technologies. To learn more about AGCO’s on and off board technologies and the Fuse Technologies strategy, visit http://www.agcocorp.com/products/precision_farming.aspx.

Technology Experts Were at Agritechnica to Showcase Precision Farming Products

By Bernhard Schmitz

AGCO’s new technology strategy, FuseTM Technologies, was a major component of AGCO’s presence recently at Agritechnica, the world’s largest exhibition of agricultural machinery and equipment. Held in Hanover, Germany, from November 12-16, 2013, the show attracted 450,000 visitors from across the globe.

Fuse Interactive Smart Farm

The Fuse Technologies interactive smart farm operated on a video game platform and showed how Fuse products help growers in each phase of the crop cycle.

Show attendees could experience Fuse products and learn more about the strategy in several ways. The Fuse booth was located at the center of the AGCO floor plan, where visitors could interact with touch screen stations to learn about the Fuse connected strategy.

The Fuse booth also included the interactive smart farm display that showed how Fuse Technologies helps growers through each phase of the crop cycle. Eric Hansotia, Senior Vice President of Global Harvesting and ATS, and Helmut Endres, Senior Vice President of Engineering Worldwide both visited the Fuse booth and interacted with the Fuse smart farm screen.

After learning about what Fuse is and how it helps growers, visitors could venture out to each brand area—Challenger, Fendt, GSI, Massey Ferguson and Valtra, as well as Fella—which featured technology stands staffed with experts ready to answer attendees’ precision farming questions.

Show attendees could interact with each brand’s precision farming products, especially some of the new products that made their debut at the show such as VarioGuide Light and the latest AgCommandTM integrations.

Additionally, AGCO’s own Matt Rushing, Vice President of Product Management, Advanced Technology Solutions (ATS) and Electronics Functional Group, was on-hand at the Massey Ferguson stand to explain the Fuse Technologies strategy: click here to see the video.

To see photos from Agritechnica 2013, visit our Facebook page.
To learn more about Fuse Technologies, click here.

Dr. Bernhard Schmitz is the Commercial Manager of ATS Products for EAME based in Neuhausen, Switzerland.

Ground Control

The quality of machinery—the iron, its design and functionality—will always be important. More often in the years ahead, though, customers will want to know what the machinery can deliver in the way of precision farming capabilities.

“Even with the exceptional productivity gains farmers have made in recent years,” says Bruce Hart, AGCO’s director, ATS Global Marketing, “there will continue to be expectations of greater gains to come. Things like uptime will need to be increased, so will in-field efficiency, yield per acre—even in less-than-perfect conditions. One of the biggest differentiators in the future to help with this will be electronics.”

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In some ways, that future has already arrived. Ken Salsman considers that nearly every time he cuts hay using his Hesston® by Massey Ferguson WR9770 windrower equipped with autosteering. “I really like the accuracy,” says Salsman, who farms about 500 acres near Macon, Mo. “Each swath is the same as the one before. The bales can get lopsided if you don’t get the same cut every time you go through the field. Plus, I can cut for six to 12 hours and not feel nearly as tired as when I’d run four hours before we had this system. I save fuel because I’m not overlapping.”

Now, even more revolutionary and helpful tools are being incorporated into farming operations. The latest advancement allows the machines to recognize and communicate their own maintenance needs, while also helping make real-time adjustments in the field.

Much of that can be accomplished through AGCO’s new AgCommand™, a telemetry system that tracks the location and activity of machinery either via computers in the office or through a portable tablet or computer.

AgCommand has already gained traction with agricultural businesses such as cooperatives and agronomy service companies.

“Technology like AgCommand has shown us how inefficient we can be,” says Terry Schmidt, an agronomy manager with CHS, Inc., in southern Minnesota. “As a result of using the program, we went from having eight fertilization units to seven and yet covered more acres the very next year.”

Schmidt is working with AGCO toward the day when all 29 of the application units he now manages for CHS in the region can be dispatched through AgCommand. That, he says, would allow for even more efficiency in terms of getting the right machine in the right location without any confusion or delay.

The ability to monitor and control machinery remotely will also make it easier for farms to employ machinery operators who don’t necessarily have to understand what every screen in the cab is doing. That’s an important factor in an era where farmers can struggle finding qualified employees.

AGCO is also working to make sure AgCommand remains easy to learn and compatible with a variety of equipment, even with other brands.

Now that these pathways for the technology are being paved, the emphasis is shifting to working with the data that’s being collected. For example, readouts from the planter or cultivator might show that field conditions are actually still too wet to be worked—and may advise a two-day wait. Or the suite of technologies built into the system will have the ability to advise the best hybrids to use in changing conditions.

Missouri farmer Ken Salsman, 65, doesn’t doubt the potential of the technology. He recalls writing a paper in college on the future of agriculture that suggested tractors will drive themselves one day.

“I didn’t think I’d live to see that actually happen,” says Salsman. “But with autosteering, we’re seeing it now.”

Read the full story at http://www.myfarmlife.com/advantage/ground-control/.

Farm Progress Show Attendees Caught a Break From the Heat While Learning About AGCO’s Technology Offerings

By Jason O’Flanagan

The 2013 Farm Progress Show (FPS) held in Decatur, IL, from August 27-29 was a great platform for farmers in North America to be exposed to the new FuseTM Technologies strategy from AGCO. FPS is the largest open air farm show in the Americas, with a unique focus directly on the farmer.

AGCO Fuse Technologies at Farm Progress Show, Illinois

The Fuse team helped answer questions at the smart bar and demonstrated key technology products for customers at FPS.

During the show AGCO showcased its technology offerings under the shade of the Fuse Pavilion at the center of the AGCO lot. Pathways leading in and out of the pavilion emphasized a key piece of the Fuse strategy – connectivity among different machinery – and guided users to various machines where they could talk with AGCO experts about Fuse technology products.

On the stage within the Fuse Pavilion, presentations at lunchtime on Tuesday and Wednesday included Bob Crain, Sr. VP of AGCO NA, Dr. Jay Lehr, Mike Pearson and me, Jason O’Flanagan. The panel discussed technology in general as well as how the Fuse Technologies strategy would benefit the farmer.

Key to the Fuse Technologies message was the “smart bar.” It featured some of the technology products that are already part of the Fuse portfolio such as AgCommandTM and Auto-Guide® 3000, which were available for demos. The pavilion and smart bar were a hit in the hot weather, providing a welcome respite from the sun to have questions answered and to see the technology in action.

Auto-Guide and AgCommand at Farm Progress ShowThe Farm Progress Show was a successful event in spite of the very hot weather. Fuse formed the centerpiece of AGCO’s commitment to its core goal:

“High-tech solutions for professional farmers feeding the world.”

To see more photos from the event, visit our Facebook page.

To learn more about Fuse Technologies, click here.

Jason O’Flanagan is a Senior Marketing Specialist for the AGCO ATS team for the North America region.