CLEVELAND (April 5)—GEO Specialty Chemicals Inc. is entering the rubber chemicals sector by acquiring Hercules Inc.´s peroxy chemicals business for an undisclosed amount. The deal is expected to be completed in the second quarter, GEO said. With operations in Gibbstown, N.J.; Franklin, Va.; and Beringen, Belgium, the Hercules resins division produces dicumyl and bis-peroxide crosslinkers for the rubber and plastics industries. "This is a breakout acquisition for GEO and will bring us in to a new niche area of business," a GEO spokesman said. He declined to discuss GEO´s strategy in the peroxy chemicals sector or to give details of the acquired units. With net profits of about $5 million on sales of $188 million in 2000, GEO makes specialty chemicals for the water-treatment, paper, coating, construction, optoelectronics and compound semiconductor industries. The Hercules resins division, which also produces processing aids, plasticizers, extenders and surfactants, last year reported sales of about $450 million.