Deere & Co. (DE) aims to nearly double its annual sales to $50 billion by 2018 under a growth plan outlined Wednesday by Chairman and Chief Executive Samuel Allen.

Allen said he wants the farm and construction machinery manufacturer to deliver three times as much profit at normal operating volumes as part of his John Deere Strategy. Allen described the plan as the first transformative business strategy for the company since 2000.

"The John Deere Strategy calls on us to aim higher, reach farther, move faster and perform better than ever before," Allen said in a speech during the company's annual shareholders' meeting in Moline, Ill. "Successfully executed, the plan will allow us to deliver much greater levels of value to our customers, investors and other constituent groups for years to come."

For the company's fiscal year that ended October 31, Deere earned $1.87 billion, or $4.35 a share, on total sales and revenue of $26 billion. For fiscal 2011, Deere forecast profit of about $2.5 billion on equipment-sales growth of 18-20%.