With a candy lineup that expands beyond Tootsie Rolls and Tootsie Pops to acquisitions such as Charleston Chew, Dubble Bubble Bubble Gum, Razzles, Dots, Junior Mints and Charms Blow Pops, Tootsie Roll is a bigger deal in the candy world than its tiny $1.5 billion market cap would suggest.
The best part? It's a mom and pop shop that wants nothing to do with the investment community. Ninety-two-year-old CEO Melvin Gordon has run the company for five decades. He and his 80-year-old wife Ellen have brushed off journalists and shunned earnings calls to maintain their control of the company and avoid takeover. Meanwhile, its share price has grown nearly 11% in the past year and sales have nearly doubled in the last two decades with very little help from advertising. It has increased its annual dividend payment for 47 years, but just 3% annually over the past five years despite low debt and a payout ratio of 41%.While a company as affordable as Tootsie Roll seems ripe for a takeover that could make shareholders extremely well off, don't expect it to happen on the Gordons' watch.