PCE looks to continue diversification, expansion - Lincoln Journal Star Article

PCE looks to continue diversification, expansion - Lincoln Journal Star Article

February 20, 2015 - The concrete and metal skeleton of a manufacturing building is rising in north Lincoln, much like the profile of the company that spawned it.

PCE Inc. -- owner of Geist and other subsidiaries -- is investing $12.5 million in a new 87,500-square-foot building next to its headquarters at 1711 Yolande Ave.

The new building will provide office, manufacturing and warehouse space for Geist. The company's current manufacturing space is 50,000 square feet. The official grand opening is planned for March 2016.

The company is constructing the building with about $1.25 million in tax increment financing. The TIF funds will be used primarily for site preparation, sidewalks and energy efficiency and façade improvements.

TIF financing uses bonds that are repaid with the increased property taxes paid on the new development.

“We're rehabbing this area,” said Sam Featherston, PCE president. Its headquarters opened in 2013.

The company expects to add about 35 more salaried employees and at least 25 production employees. The company projects the number of production jobs could double in the next five years.

Featherston said the future looks bright for PCE, the company he and a group of outside investors founded in 1993.

“We make useful products,” he said.

PCE employs nearly 275 people in Lincoln and another 145 in offices across the world, including in China and England. The company sees nearly $75 million in revenue per year.

The company owns a host of subsidiaries, including HTI Plastics, Apex Plastics, Lincoln Plastics and companies in Europe and Asia.

Geist is the third largest manufacturer of power, cooling and monitoring equipment for data centers, and PCE’s plastics subsidiaries manufacture products as diverse as pipes for pivot irrigation systems, gun stocks and plastic bottles.

Featherston said the company likely will continue to diversify its holdings and products, seeking niche products that few other companies manufacture.

“I expect us to continue developing new products across all our businesses,” he said.

Reach the writer at 402-473-7225 or kabourezk@journalstar.com