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John May is seven months into his tenure as only the 10th chief executive ever to lead the 183-year-old American icon. He finds himself at the helm of the $39.2 billion agricultural giant as it rolls with virus-related punches; Deere briefly suspended production of construction and forestry equipment at some facilities amid weakened demand, and is now manufacturing 400,000 face shields for health care workers. The company's revenue rose 5.1% year-over-year and profits spiked by 37%, to $3.3 billion in 2019. But even before the pandemic, Deere said it expected sales to fall at least 10% in 2020.
Patrick T. Fallon—Bloomberg via Getty Images
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