Jonathan Keller and Sean Rubin, Class of 2009
Over the last 3 years, Jonathan Keller and Sean Rubin have been working on a start-up called Life Floor. We manufacture, market, and sell a revolutionary product designed especially for wet areas (e.g., pool decks, showers, and waterparks) with barefoot traffic. Life Floor is slip-resistant (traction actually increases when the floor gets wet), it’s cushioned (you can bounce eggs on it), and it’s totally waterproof (and anti-microbial, chemical resistant, and easy to clean, too). Our company is mission-driven. Everyone interacts with wet floors, and we want to make that experience safer, cleaner, and generally more enjoyable, making the world a better place in the process.
We started by selling to big water parks, including Six Flags, Cedar Fair, Universal Studios, Great Wolf Lodge and LEGOLAND. Once Life Floor was proven in high-traffic waterparks, we began selling through distributors like PlayCore, the largest North American playground manufacturer, and Rubberflooringinc.com, the largest North American online distributor of soft flooring. We are currently in the process of starting our own manufacturing plant, and beginning a fourth-round capital raise. Several of our investors are older Tigers including Gus Blanchard ’65, Mark Heinemann ’67, and Kevin Rehnberg ’86. Since 2011, the company has grown from 13 unique installations and no employees to over 153 unique installations and 8 employees, with another 150 unique locations and several new hires expected for the remainder of 2014.
Jonathan serves as the CEO, having previously worked at McKinsey & Co. As CEO, he manages investor relations, spreads the Life Floor gospel to national accounts and distributors, and manages a dedicated team. Sean serves as the Chief Creative Officer, where he’s responsible for everything from product design to marketing materials to trade show booths. Sean continues to draw his upcoming graphic novel, Bolivar, and work on other illustration and design projects. Life Floor is based in Minneapolis, but sells internationally. Sean (usually) works remotely, from his studio in New York.