BLT Enterprises Founder Bernard Huberman Dies at 65

His firm invested more than $2 billion in commercial real estate

reprints


Bernard Bernie Huberman, founder of BLT Enterprises, died July 10 at age 65, the company announced last week.

Huberman developed what was the largest waste transfer facility in Los Angeles at the time, and ran a firm that invested more than $2 billion in commercial real estate to date. 

SEE ALSO: Development Around South Florida Casinos Abounds, But Isn’t a Sure Bet

A son of Russian immigrants, Huberman grew up in Boyle Heights and worked at his father’s scrap metal yard before developing the concept of a waste transfer and recycling facility, which paved the way for the creation of BLT Enterprises in 1984. Huberman started the business by driving a trash truck, and then developed large-scale transfer stations and recycling facilities throughout California.

Huberman and business partner Dan Rosenthal jumped into the real estate business early in L.A. in 1987. 

“Our first large-scale waste facility was in Downtown L.A. on Washington and Alameda,” Rosenthal, executive vice president and chief administrative officer at BLT Enterprises, said in a statement. “We spent a lot of time in the area at the time and came across opportunities to acquire industrial properties that most real estate investors shied away from. After we acquired a significant number of properties, Bernie and I realized that we couldn’t run the real estate business without building a leadership team like we did in the waste business.”

The Santa Monica-based company currently has more than 3 million square feet of industrial, creative office and soundstages in its portfolio.

Last year, the firm acquired the original headquarters for Technicolor and the studio lot for MGM for $64 million. Earlier in the year, BLT acquired a different production site and creative office in Hollywood for about $20 million, and, in 2019, the firm bought four soundstages at the former Ben Kitay Stages nearby. 

Gregory Cornfield can be reached at gcornfield@commercialobserver.com.