From humble start to working with the Timberwolves, Mounds View barber plans expansion

Akeem Akway stands next to Wolves star center Karl-Anthony Towns. (Supplied)

While many business owners are struggling to make ends meet, a barber in Mounds View, Minnesota who came from humble beginnings has turned his shop into a booming business, even in the face of a pandemic.

For five years, the barbers of Akway's Sports Barbershop have been busy -- so busy that they are expanding to another location even during a pandemic.

Inside the shop's doors is what many clients consider a second home and an escape.

"When I graduated, people were telling me I should peruse barbering and I did just that," owner Akeem Akway recalls.

For Akway, the business started in a high school gym where he would cut his teammates' hair, to now being the go-to barber for professional athletes.

"It's kind of cool to see me cutting my teammates in the locker room at the high school and now me cutting the Timberwolves in their locker room," he said. "It just worked out like that."

And coming soon to Uptown, a second location for the shop. A project long in the making, with success Akeem attributes to his community, their clients, and his partner Nathan Sheferaw who has known Akeem since he was 12.

"Once I started to see the impact the barbershop could have on a kid, I definitely wanted to be a part of that, and Akeem allowed me to branch out the franchise and to continue it," said Sheferaw.

The new shop on Lyndale Avenue in Minneapolis is set to open by next Friday.