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As published in Toledo Business Journal - December 1, 2019

Construction on Daavlin Company’s new 30,000 square foot building

Construction on Daavlin Company’s new 30,000 square foot building

Daavlin investing $2M
in Bryan expansion

Company constructing a new 30,000 sf building, adding 30 new jobs

The Daavlin Company, a privately held manufacturer of phototherapeutic products with a worldwide presence based in Bryan, is investing $2 million to construct a new 30,000 square foot building located at 205 West Bement Street at Bryan Industrial Park North – Bryan’s new industrial park.

According to David Swanson, president of Daavlin, the facility is being constructed to house the company’s new powder coating line and a fluorescent lamp manufacturing line.

“The building will be the first to be constructed on land that is part of the City of Bryan’s new industrial park. Because we expect to add a significant number of jobs, the City was able to leverage this into a grant to help pay for extending the street in front of our facilities and to build an entirely new street to the north that will open up more frontage for their industrial park,” said Swanson.

Swanson went on to explain that adding the powder coating line was due to a cost / quality issue, and adding the fluorescent lamp manufacturing line is a defensive move for the company.

“Adding the powder coating line is a cost / quality issue. We buy thousands of aluminum extrusions a year and each of them has to be powder coated and then transported to us. Packing them well enough to eliminate damage during transportation is both expensive and problematic. Coating them and then moving them directly into assembly areas will minimize that problem, or at least, if the problem still exists, we will know who to blame. We expect doing this work in-house will save us a significant amount of money as well,” said Swanson. “The fluorescent lamp manufacturing line is a defensive move. All of our products require the use of fluorescent lamps, but with the advent of LED-based lighting, it is a dying industry. Since LEDs are not an option for our use, we simply had to ensure our supply.”

The project began in April and is expected to be completed by the end of the year. According to Swanson, it will take Daavlin several months to get the powder coating line operational and then around six months after that to assemble the fluorescent lamp manufacturing line. Thiel Construction Co., Inc., based in Blakeslee, Ohio, is the designer and general contractor for the project.

The Daavlin Company’s current facility in Bryan

The Daavlin Company’s current facility in Bryan

According to Swanson, the company manufactures phototherapeutic medical devices that are used by dermatologists to treat skin diseases such as psoriasis, vitiligo, and scleroderma, among others. These devices are sold throughout the United States and around the world. He noted that the new facility will not provide any new products, but it is simply a vertical integration of some of the processes and components. The company has a network of international distributors offering Daavlin products in more than 60 countries.

Daavlin currently has 75 employees and expects to add 30 new jobs over the next three years ranging from production workers to professional level management. Swanson noted that this process of adding new employees has already begun and the company has doubled its staff over the past five years.

When speaking of what sets Daavlin apart from others in the industry, Swanson said, “I believe that our attention to customer service and our willingness to continuously invest in the business has helped us. As an example, Daavlin is the only company in our industry to have on-the-road service technicians who travel the country servicing our devices, and sometimes those of our competitors. Our attention to international markets also distinguishes us from our domestic competitors, with about 25% of our total turnover coming from overseas customers. Over the years, that has made us virtually recession-proof. In addition, we have really smart and dedicated people that have consistently invented new ways of doing business. We try to hire the best people we can find and then get out of their way.”

According to Swanson, the company also invested over $1 million two years ago to add 28 new offices in 10,000 square feet of space along with a 10,000 square foot warehouse.

“We are pleased that the City of Bryan has been willing to invest in the infrastructure necessary to support us in this project. Bryan, in general, is a great place to do business. There are good people, a progressive government, and an ingrained culture of doings things right. Take a look at our parks, our streets, our schools, our public buildings, and our state-of-the-art hospital and medical center. We also have a time-tested cadre of strong industrial companies. We enjoy a wonderful standard of living here, right at the crossroads to everywhere. I started my business in Bryan 38 years ago and have never been tempted to move it,” concluded Swanson.