Pacific Beverage, a division of Santa Barbara-based food and beverage distributor Jordano’s, told the Business Times it has closed on the purchase of seven acres at the Cabrillo Business Park in Goleta.
The company is planning to build a new 102,000-square-foot regional distribution center on the property, which was purchased for $10.6 million. The seller was the Ventura office of the Irvine-based Sares Regis Group, which owns the business park.
Pacific Beverage plans to break ground on the facility in 2016. When complete, the entire division will move to the Cabrillo Business Park from its current Santa Barbara locations, freeing up space for Jordano’s food distribution operations, which is sorely needed, the company said.
While the company is pursuing the new building to specifically handle its growing beer business, the main driver behind the plan is the distributor’s ballooning food business, which is “bursting at the seams,” Pacific Beverage President Jeff Jordano said.
Growth of the company’s food business is projected in the double digits and there is a real sense of urgency to free up more space for those operations, he said.
“Part of it is the economy getting better, with people eating out more and so on. But a lot of it has been due the competitive dynamics in the market place,” Jordano told the Business Times.
Due to the impact of the recession, many of Jordano’s regional competitors went out of business. Cardinal Food Service in Oxnard, Souza Food Service in Santa Maria and AMK Food Service in San Luis Obispo all folded under the pressures of the economic downturn, allowing Jordano’s to pick up much of that business.
With respect to food business, the company has been renting trailer and additional freezer storage space in the region to accommodate the overflow. That growth is also likely to translate into additional jobs in sales, warehousing, delivery and administration, Jordano said.
Even though the food business is driving the expansion, the beverage division has grown steadily for Jordano’s over the last 10 years, mostly thanks to the craft beer boom.
For the most part,the beer business is a mature industry, Jordano said, but because of the rise of craft brewers, the number stock keeping units (SKU) or line items the company handles has more than tripled over the last decade.
“Ten years ago we had about 300 SKUs; this year we have 1,100 and we need to be able to handle that expansion in items,” he said.
The new building is designed by St. Louis, Missouri-based HDA Architects, which specializes in beer facilities. Jordano said after visiting a wholesaler in Houston, Texas whose building was designed by HDA, he followed up with the firm since the Jordano’s was looking for space.
The building will primarily be warehouse space, accounting for about 85,000 square feet, including cold storage, and about 20,000 square feet of office space.
When the project is complete, Jordano’s will move the entire beverage business to the new facility and turn the spaces the division currently occupies at 550 South Patterson and 5305 Ekwill Street over to the food division. The new Pacific Beverage facility will be the company’s fourth distribution center in addtion to locations in Oxnard, Santa Maria and Santa Margarita.
Jordano’s has project clearance from the city of Goleta and is currently working on the interior layout of the building. The company hopes to submit plans for permitting and planning by the end of the year and be ready to break ground in the spring of next year.
The company’s new neighbors will include Deckers Brands, FLIR Systems, Texas Instruments and Hewlett Packard. UC Santa Barbara and the U.S. Department of Agriculture also have acquired land or have space in the business park.
Pacific Beverage was represented in the transaction by Mark Mattingly of Pacifica Commercial Realty.