HISTORY OF THE HADDAD FAMILY
and The Birth Of Elijah Equities
How We Started
The Haddad Family's American origins date back to the turn of the 20th century when Eli Haddad emigrated from Aleppo, Syria at the age of 11. In 1910, Eli moved into 52 Allen Street on Manhattan's Lower East Side where he shared an apartment and communal bathroom with other immigrant Jews seeking a better life in America. Little did he know at that time that 52 Allen Street would serve a much greater role throughout his life, and be the springboard for his family's future businesses.
After serving as a peddler and an apprentice to local Lower-East-Side retailers throughout his teens, Eli was able to secure the lease for the store at 52 Allen Street, where he opened up shop as a merchant to the retail and wholesale trades. In the 1920's, Eli established one of the very first import licenses for merchandise from the Far East into the United States and began to sell everything from tools and linens to oriental rugs and apparel.
At this time, Eli, the eldest of five siblings, brought his brothers over to the United States to join the family business. After many years of hard work and difficult travel, Eli Haddad Corp. had become so successful that in 1928 Eli was able to purchase his first New York City property - 52 Allen Street!
Eli Haddad Corp., later renamed Haddad & Sons as the families expanded and traded under the name Hadson, grew into a multimillion dollar importing concern servicing all the major department store chains operating at that time. F.W. Woolworth, Sears Roebuck & Company, Gimbel's and Korvettes were all valuable customers. Overseas factories and suppliers shipping millions of pieces of merchandise into New York were playfully known to call the city's western waters the "Hadson River".
Investment in New York
In the subsequent decades, Eli and his brothers placed their profits from the importing business, now headquartered in what became the Garment District at 313 5th Avenue, into Manhattan commercial properties. Specifically, Eli concentrated his purchases in the areas bounded by Fifth Avenue and Broadway between 14th Street and 35th Street.
"If you can't walk to it, don't buy it" was his motto, emphasizing that the secret to his success in the real estate business was strong, efficient and localized management. Indeed, the family's holdings began to read like a city map: 91, 119, 156, 246, 298, 313 Fifth Avenue; 518, 928, 1164, 1165, 1170, 1178, 1181, 1204, 1225, 1234 Broadway. Overall, Eli Haddad had purchased dozens of Manhattan buildings during his lifetime, firmly establishing his family's security for decades to come.
Over the generations, Eli and his brothers amicably went their separate ways and divided the portfolio of properties among themselves. Eli's three sons, who as the eldest of the second generation in the business had all learned under Eli's direct tutelage, each played integral roles in expanding and managing the family assets. After Eli's passing in 1966, they continued to purchase Manhattan properties including 494 Eighth Avenue and 520 West 20th Street.
As the values of their real estate holdings continued to increase, management of the real estate portfolio became the primary focus of the family's business. Some twenty years later, Hiram and his brothers harmoniously went their separate ways just as their father and uncles had, each taking control of several properties and founding their own management companies.
Hiram, now joined by his two sons Eli H. Haddad and James Haddad founded Elijah Equities, LLC. Hiram and his sons have continued to adhere to their heritage of a strong work ethic and direct personal management style to lead the family through its second century in business. Continued reinvestment into and maximizing the values of the family real estate holdings are guiding principles. For example, 494 Eighth Avenue, a 24-story property on the bustling corner of Eighth Avenue and 35th Street has evolved from a garment manufacturing building, into a boutique office property, employing cutting-edge elevator and security technologies, new building infrastructure such as windows, communications, and heating systems, which are able to service the multiple Technology, Media and Professional firms it counts as tenants.
In the ensuing years, Eli and James Haddad have also returned the family to its acquisitive roots making strategic purchases such as the retail condominiums at 21 Astor Place, which houses the #1 Starbucks in the United States, 120 Eleventh Avenue in the heart of the Far West Chelsea Art District, 1950 Fulton Street in Bedford-Stuyvesant Brooklyn a retail shopping center with over 240,000 square feet of development rights, and 307 5th Avenue, a 17 story office tower in the burgeoning NoMad neighborhood of Manhattan.
On the immediate horizon is Elijah Equities’ most exciting project to date. 520 West 20th Street, currently a four-story 65,000 square foot industrial property by the Highline, which is being redeveloped into a seven-story 100,000 square foot boutique office and retail property with over 18,000 square feet of rooftop and outdoor amenity space designed by Morris Adjmi. Over the last forty years Hiram has continued to instill in his sons and grandchildren, who are now involved in the day-to-day operations of the business, the guiding ideologies learned at his father's side and honed and passed down over ninety years; hard work, honesty in dealings, a conservative long-term approach and, most importantly, a stellar reputation.
“ Our business is strong and our relationships are some of the oldest in the industry”
Elijah is first and foremost a family company. We work with a deep-seated code of ethics that influences everything we do. We believe in doing things the right way and we have cultivated our process over a century of experience.
A tribute to our past
While Looking To the Future
As of 2013 the fourth generation of Haddads have entered the family business. Hiram Haddad makes sure that his grandchildren do not forget their humble roots, always reminding them, "he was so wealthy, he didn't have to work until he was 11 years old”. We look forward to what the future holds for Elijah Equities and we have no doubt that with our cornerstones of family, ethics and insight we will be paving the way for what’s next in New York real estate.