Northern Michigan’s Lifestyle Brand M22: The Timeline

What’s now the hottest and most iconic lifestyle brand Northern Michigan has ever seen was once something else entirely. Matt and Keegan Myers set out in 2006 to promote their kiteboarding business, and left the experience patriarchs of a business empire. We’ve mapped the growth and evolution of M22 from its very beginning.


2004:

Matt and Keegan Myers, owners of Broneah Kiteboarding, have a few M22 T-shirts printed for themselves and friends. They sell them out of their kiteboarding van.


2006:

Traverse cover photo of Matt and Keegan (wearing an M22 shirt) published, sparking widespread interest in the T-shirt and what it represented.


2007:

Opened first retail store, in downtown Traverse City.

M22 trademark registered. (Local trademark attorney Enrico Schaefer suggests obtaining the trademark during a kiteboarding lesson with Matt Myers: “He had a kite in his hand, and he was looking at my shirt and said, ‘You should protect that, it’s a really cool brand.’”)


2009:

First M22 Challenge, a run-bike-paddle race held at the Dune Climb/Little Glen Lake. Athletes run up the dunes, bike around Little and Big Glen lakes, and kayak or stand-up paddleboard Little Glen Lake. The event continues each June.


2011:

Love Michigan logo introduced, featured on clothing items and accessories


2012:

Moves into larger downtown Traverse City location. “That was a huge jump—it was five times our other store size,” Matt says.

Matt Myers is diagnosed with Chordoma, a rare type of cancer that occurs in the bones of the skull and spine. He undergoes high-risk surgery in Pittsburgh, everything goes well. He takes 4 to 6 months off work. Nate Farran hired to serve as chief operating officer.


2013:

Glen Arbor retail store opens, operating as a franchise-like store.

Warehouse built off-site.


2015:

Takes over office space above downtown Traverse City retail store, for staff office and meeting use.


Spring 2016:

Basement of retail store remodeled and upgraded.

M22.com revamped.


Summer 2016:

Launch of “Michigan Microadventures”—ideas for day trips for customers. “Every day can be an adventure and anyone can make that happen, no matter where they are. It doesn’t have to be hardcore. It doesn’t have to cost money. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time.” More details at M22.com.

TVM July 2016

 

 

This article was originally published in the July 2016 issue of Traverse, Northern Michigan’s Magazine.
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