Many things can happen, many stories take place around chairs. Many more around a company.
Akaba was born as a deeply social and inclusive company, and those values endure and lead the way. They guide our management model, and also our way of understanding creation. We manufacture furniture for communities, which seeks social encounter starting with the individual. We create furniture for spaces with a human dimension that invite people to talk, relate and create collectively.
Born in '86, the heirs of '68
Akaba has been a free-thinking project from the outset. We were born into a situation of cultural unrest that had its roots buried deep in a period of profound change. We saw the light with a perfectly defined profile combining the love for design and transgression; but also marked by our environment's industrial DNA. Design and manufacturing represented the two sides of a same process, of a same entrepreneurial identity.
1986.- From design to art
We establish the company and set about combining design and art in avant-garde pieces, a model that would shape the future. But always with our sights on the functional and practical aspects. Designers like Mariscal and Calatrava participate in the creative process. Our attendance of international fairs (Paris, Cologne, Milan, etc.) earns us outstanding presence in all specialized magazines. And international recognition arrives.
1989.- From home to business interiors
The decade of the '80s ended with a process of change in the company: with no loss of quality and without abandoning design, we focus on a more functional type of product. A change of direction occurs: from household furniture to contract or installation furniture. We start to produce furniture with a greater sales projection.
1994.- Gorka, the take-off
A crucial year for Akaba. Gorka represented not only the birth of a new product, but of a true icon. The company grows to the rhythm of the fame and prestige enjoyed by this product, the result of careful investment. All without forgetting the enormously important human factor during that period of growth.
1995.- Bilbao Metro with Foster + Partners
Working hand in hand with Norman Foster and his team, we design and manufacture the seating for the Bilbao metro. Taking a design by Norman Foster, we joined hands on moulding it with the goal of improved ergonomics.
2000.- Loiu Airport with Calatrava
Bespoke manufacturing for a singular project. Designed by the architect Santiago Calatrava, the benches in Loiu airport perfectly match the terminal design. Respecting the original design and the aesthetic value they bring to the space, we manufacture the benches in special hardwearing timber: Canadian cedar wood.
2000.- Recognitions and awards
In the 2000s, Akaba receives institutional recognition in the shape of the highest national accolades: the National Design Award and the Prince Felipe Award for Business Excellence. The second of the two acknowledges our management model, with its collective and social approach to the focus on people.
2003.- Launch of Muga
Our first range of office chairs. This collection enabling us to extend the borders of our product range and enter new market niches was christened Muga (meaning "border" in Basque).
2008.- New facilities in Usurbil
The decade ended with a company made up of 70 people in three different locations. This prompted Akaba to take the jump and build new centralized facilities. Our new centre has state-of-the-art services: a smart warehouse, a hugely efficient production model, an impressive showroom occupying 800 square metres, a gastronomic club inviting workers to meet… are the facilities subsequently introduced by Akaba.
2009.- Strength to weather the storm
That change coincides with a complicated time for the sector, in the midst of an economic crisis that shook it to the core. Innovation and our values help us to weather the turbulent times, also enabling us to improve: we were able to broaden our skills and felt better prepared.
2014.- Introduction of furniture
2014.- Introduction of furniture
For the first time we introduced new lines of furniture to the Akaba catalogue. A logical evolution with which we diversify and increase our range of products to offer greater support to projects.
2016.- Return to our roots
If Gorka was the take-off, Kabi represented confirmation of Akaba's ability to create yet another extensive range of contract chairs. Once again we collaborated with Jorge Pensi, the same designer we worked with to create the Gorka chair. The single-piece polypropylene seat and steel tubes mark the character of this new collection.
2018.- Generational changeover
The generational changeover arrives. A new generation of women, taking up our full business DNA and injecting it with new sensitivity. Akaba incorporates new designers to its team of collaborators, opening the way for the launch of new products incorporating the brand trademarks of design, creativity and reliability.
a handful of
truly pragmatic design
for a different way
of doing things
It is usual to refer to chairs as having human body parts: back, arms, legs and feet.