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Commercial Real Estate

Behind the Deal: California-based DrinkPak to Open Massive Fort Worth Manufacturing Plants

Totaling more than 2.8 million square feet, the industrial facilities will bring 1,000 jobs to the region and produce up to 5 percent of all cans in North America.
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DrinkPak's 1.5 million-square-foot manufacturing facility on Eagle Parkway in Fort Worth. DrinkPak

Santa Clarita-based canned beverage manufacturer DrinkPak, which was founded in 2020 and produces 2.1 billion annual cans of beverages, is spending $452 million to open two huge manufacturing facilities in Fort Worth totaling more than 2.8 million square feet. DrinkPak CEO Nate Patena expects the sites to more than double the brand’s manufacturing output.

The first facility, dubbed DP2, is set to open at Eagle Parkway near Alliance in November 2024 and will be a 1.5 million square-foot industrial facility that will house manufacturing of energy drinks, teas, sodas, waters, hard seltzers, beer, wine, and spirits.

The 1.4 million-square-foot DP3, which will be located at Carter Park East, will open in January 2025 and will be the company’s first venture into producing coffees, protein drinks, milk, and alt-milk products, including oat milk, almond milk, and soy.

Eagle Parkway was developed by the Trammell Crow Co. and Carter Park East was developed by Rob Riner Cos., Clarion Partners, and Crow Holdings.

The facilities will be the company’s second and third manufacturing plants. The brand, which built its first manufacturing site in California, where it employs 550 people, expects the DFW two facilities to create 1,000 local jobs.

“DFW was a supernatural fit for us, and these Texas facilities are going to be our crown jewel,” Patena told D CEO. “They are our largest aggregate facilities, they will be the highest output facilities, and the most technologically advanced. We’re working on more tailored facilities on the East Coast and Mexico, but Fort Worth was really our opportunity to build the crown jewel in North America of aluminum can facilities.”

DrinkPak’s California facility has an approximate payroll of $80 million, according to Patena. The average annual salary in its Fort Worth complexes is expected to be about $70,000.

On a cash basis, Patena expects the two properties to churn a profit on the $452 million investment within the site’s first years of operations, “which is very similar to how our California site performed,” he said. “And I think there is the opportunity for us to pay back these facilities on a total investment basis in three or four years.”

Why North Texas Won Out

Patena said North Texas rose to the top not only for its favorable cost of business, but also it was the only market that could offer nearly 3 million square feet of industrial space between just two properties.

“In the many other cities we searched, we would be getting the same footprint in five, six, or seven buildings,” Patena said. “They were not in close geographic proximity, and finding contiguous square footage nearby is an absolute must in our business because we handle and produce 4,000 to 5,000 pallets a day.”

Both facilities will be fully robotic warehousing units and all vehicles within the properties will utilize autonomously guided vehicles. “Our lines can produce up to 2,200 or 2,300 can per minute,” Patena said. “We’ll have a total of eight lines across the two facilities, so we’re talking producing to the tune of 4 billion to 5 billion cans per year in aggregate across the two facilities. Our North Texas footprint will ultimately produce about four to 5 percent of all cans in North America.”

The city of Fort Worth offered DrinkPak a 10-year abatement, equating to a maximum incentive of $21 million, a $2.7 million tax abatement with Tarrant County, and a $1.3 million tax abatement with Denton County.

During the pandemic, DrinkPak built its 1.2 million-square-foot plant in California in less than a year. “This facility footprint is twice as big as California for us, and it’s being done in less time than the California build out,” Patena said. “So it really just underscores how excellent the process in Texas is.”

DrinkPak’s clients aren’t made public, but Patena says the company has contracts with “about every major energy drink company, every major beer and canned-spirits company, almost all the major canned-water companies, and most of the major non-soda brands.”

Newmark’s Patrick DuRoss, John DeGrinis, Jeff Abraham, Javier Galvan, Adam Faulk, James Cooksey, Garrison Efird, and Adam Faulk Jr. represented the tenant in the transaction.

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Ben Swanger

Ben Swanger

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Ben Swanger is the managing editor for D CEO, the business title for D Magazine. Ben manages the Dallas 500, monthly…

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