New York Firm Buys Hayward Candy Manufacturing Site

From left: Sam Altshuler and Wesley R. Edens in front of 27211 Industrial Blvd. (Getty Images, Annabelle Candy Company, Google Maps)

Annabelle Candy, maker of Rocky Road, Big Hunk and Abba-Zaba candy bars, sold its office and manufacturing plant in Hayward to an affiliate of New York-based Fortress Investment Group.

The company, founded by a Belarussian immigrant to the East Bay, sold the property at 27211 Industrial Boulevard for $13 million, reported. Members of the Gogol and Karl families, which have been linked to leadership positions with Annabelle Candy for years, were also involved in the deal.

Annabelle Candy’s history in Hayward dates back to 1950 when the company was started. The candy conglomerate, which is most well known for producing candy bars such as Rocky Road, Look and U-No, built the factory on Industrial Boulevard in 1965. All of its products were produced at the recently sold site.

The company’s founder, Sam Altshuler, came to the U.S. in 1917 and began his business by selling candy bars from a pushcart outside movie theaters. Altshuler named the company after his daughter Annabelle. The candy maker grew over the years by acquiring rival candy companies like Golden Nugget Co. and Cardinet Co.

Fortress’s plans for the candy-manufacturing site remain unknown, and the company didn’t provide a comment when prompted. The firm has been purchasing multiple Bay Area properties in recent months, bringing the company $54.2 billion in assets.

In nearby Fremont, another New York firm bought about 28 acres of land in a joint venture with an El Segundo firm. Clarion Partners and 9th Street Partners paid $123 million for the property and plan to build six Class A industrial buildings, totaling 495,000 square feet, across almost a dozen parcels.

[SV] — Victoria Pruitt 

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