Sovereign Flavors is moving its headquarters from California to the Austin area

Sovereign Flavors, a California-based company that develops beverage flavor formulations, is the latest company to relocate its headquarters to central Texas.

Currently based in Santa Ana, Sovereign Flavors is moving to a new 80,000 square foot facility in Kyle, where it will house executive offices, manufacturing, quality assurance, and research and development departments.

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Founded in 2003, the 50-person company operates a flavor lab that creates flavors that are infused into its customers’ drinks, cocktail mixers, nutrition bars and more.

The company uses natural, organic and non-GMO ingredients from a library of over 4,000 flavors. Its mixers are listed as “natural flavor” or “natural and artificial flavor” on the product packaging.

“We’ve had wild expansion over the past two years, and we’re growing beyond our small footprint in Santa Ana,” said David Ames, president of Sovereign Flavors. “Last year we worked seven days a week, two shifts for six months, because there was so much work and we couldn’t get it out.”

The company looked at Florida, Tennessee and the Dallas-Forth Worth area before deciding Kyle was the place for its next wave of growth, he said.

“We met with the city manager, the mayor and the townspeople, and it was really the energy, how dynamic they were and how much they wanted us to be part of this fabric,” Ames said. . “Kyle is going to be promising. It’s who we are and working with people who want you there. It was a no-brainer.”

An added bonus, Ames said, is Kyle’s location. “We’re doing a tremendous amount of business in Texas and we’re going to be in their backyard. Our delivery times will be shortened, our freight rates will be reduced, and our service will be even better than it is now.”

Kyle, which has grown rapidly over the past 10 years and now has over 50,000 residents, is just south of Austin in Hays County.

Sovereign Flavors has two sides to its business. Its R&D team develops beverage formulations that brands use to produce products under their own name.

“Most beverage companies don’t do the development, they rely on the flavor companies to do it,” Ames said. He said Sovereign doesn’t release customer names because “these big companies rely on us to do the formulation work and they don’t want anyone to know what flavor companies they use.”

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Sovereign Flavors, a California-based company that develops beverage flavor formulations, is moving its headquarters from California to Kyle, with plans for an 80,000 square foot facility.

The U.S. organic food flavoring market generated $112 million in 2020 and is expected to reach $234.3 million by 2026, according to a report by Allied Market Research. Growth is being driven by increased attention to the side effects of artificial flavors and heightened consumer health awareness, according to the report.

The other side of Sovereign’s business is manufacturing flavors and shipping them to food companies that use them in their finished products. The move to Kyle will take place in the coming months, with a dozen employees from Sovereign Flavors in California relocating.

Once established in Kyle, the company expects to create several dozen jobs in research and development, quality assurance and production over the next few years.

Sovereign Flavors, which is privately held and does not disclose financial information, has not received any venture capital or outside loans, Ames said. “It’s all been done through cash flow over the years,” he said.

The company is the latest to announce a move to the Austin area. Other recent transplants include Super Coffee — a fast-growing bottled coffee maker with celebrity investors including Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez — which recently moved its headquarters from New York.

Meanwhile, fintech company Green Dot, America’s largest provider of prepaid debit cards, moved its headquarters from Pasadena, Calif., to Austin, and e-commerce service provider Cart.com, which in February raised $240 million for expansion, moved its headquarters to Austin from Houston.

Small private company relocations join a growing number of giant corporations that have moved their headquarters from California to Austin. They include electric carmaker Tesla and software maker Oracle.

A number of other global technology companies – including Apple, Facebook, Google and Amazon – have also expanded their operations in central Texas.

Meanwhile, Samsung has announced plans for a $17 billion chip factory in Taylor.

Sovereign Flavors looked at Florida, Tennessee and the Dallas-Forth Worth area before deciding Kyle was the location for its next wave of growth, company president David Ames said.  (Provided by Sovereign Flavors)

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