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Akervall Technologies

(734) 389-7400
1512 Woodland Dr
Saline, MI 48176

Sassa Akervall, taking biz from the basement to its 1st office

Akervall Technologies moved into its first office last May. Making it from a founder's kitchen table to a real commercial space is a big moment for every small business. What made it unique for the Washtenaw County-based startup is where it came from.

"We were in a basement before," says Sassa Akervall, CEO of Akervall Technologies.

Sassa Akervall's basement in Ann Arbor. For about six years. The company had eight employees when it made the move to its first office. Before that they all toiled in Sassa Akervall's basement every workday.

"We were all in one room," Sassa Akervall says. "When the phone rang everyone else had to be quiet. We were literally bursting at the seams."

Akervall Technologies makes the SISU Mouth Guard, a thin-yet-tough mouthguard. It's composed of non-compressible, perforated material, and it’s 30 percent stronger than conventional mouthguards.

The SISU Mouth Guard was created by Dr. Jan Akervall, a local ear, nose and throat specialist. He is also Sassa Akervall's husband. He created it because he didn’t see a quality option on the market. The SISU Mouth Guard is primarily marketed toward athletes. Akervall Technologies also recently came out with the SOVA Night Guard, which is designed to help people who grind their teeth while they sleep.

Sassa and Dr. Akervall have built the company from the ground up with him designing the first product and she putting the business together piece by piece. Akervall Technologies has harnessed a number of local entrepreneurial resources, working with Ann Arbor SPARK and taking a five-figure microloan from the Michigan Microloan Fund.

Akervall Technologies really started to gain traction over the last year and is aiming to become a $1 million company within the next 12 months. That has enabled it to take over its first office. The 15,000 square-foot facility in is Saline. It sat vacant for a few years after an automotive firm vacated it.

The new facility includes a wet lab for research and development, offices for management and sales, and a manufacturing area. Akervall Technologies recently bought a packaging machine to help it bring more of its operations in-house. Sassa Akervall expects to completely fill the space within the next year or two to keep up with its current growth curve.

"We're looking to create more jobs," Akervall says.

- Written by Jon Zemke

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