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CHICAGO — Plastic Cos. Enterprises Inc. of Lincoln, Neb., has acquired its third company in as many years.

Randy Wooley, PCE's director of marketing and sales, said the holding company bought the manufacturing division of Lincoln-based Geist Inc. on Feb. 17 for an undisclosed sum.

Renamed Geist Manufacturing Inc., the 40-employee company operates four injection molding machines with clamping forces of 50-150 tons and two profile extrusion lines. The firm, with annual sales of $4 million, manufactures proprietary and custom products for the agriculture and electronic industries.

Two key products are a PVC safety floor strip that covers telephone and electric cords in offices and an adjustable irrigation gate used in farming.

``We've a pretty aggressive growth plan,'' Wooley said in a March 10 interview during the National Design Engineering Show in Chicago. ``We are looking seriously at getting into thermoforming.''

He said PCE, a private investment group of 15 shareholders, is looking for other, larger acquisitions in the Central Plains states.

Other PCE companies are Apex Plastics, a bottle blow molder located in Brookfield, Mo., and Heinke Technology Inc. of Lincoln, an injection molder of pharmaceutical and animal health-care products.

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