About KanJam
KanJam - Van
The Whole Story

What started out in the mid 1990s as a few guys throwing a disc into banged up metal garbage cans has emerged as America’s #1 party sport. But “what a long, strange trip it’s been” for partners Charles Sciandra and Mitch Rubin.

Their passion and vision for the game is the cornerstone of KanJam’s success. Now synonymous with tailgating, camping, beach parties, school gymnasiums, college campuses, neighborhood parks and backyard parties, the game played everywhere might not have been played at all if not for the ingenuity and perseverance of the KanJam partners.

It all started when Sciandra approached Paul Swisher, former KanJam co-partner, with the idea of creating a revolutionary disc tossing game. Sciandra knew it would be tough, as only 1/3 of 1% of all patented ideas ever make it to market. Swisher was undaunted, and the two co-inventors began the KanJam journey.

But patent and production hurdles had to be jumped before KanJam could take off, and they answered the call with some clever thinking and a little bit of luck (or divine intervention). When patent challenges initially arose, Sciandra knew that he would need to differentiate KanJam from other disc-based games. The game would require significant changes for approval, design, acceptance, pricing, marketing and distribution through various channels. He responded by creating the “Instant Win” slot—the bullseye of great marksmen, the “Hail Mary” of football quarterbacks, the half-court basket at the buzzer. The Instant Win allows for an opponent to catch up to the other team at any point in the game, regardless of the score. With this added feature, the KanJam patent was approved within 13 months (Lucky 13).

Patent in hand, now KanJam just needed a product. How could the same game that used heavy-duty garbage cans be brought to the masses in an easily set-up and transportable fashion? After months of reconnaissance trips to sporting goods retailers and hardware stores, Sciandra literally stumbled upon the answer in his own basement. There, seemingly unusable and unloved, was a coiled up piece of leftover linoleum. And the light bulb went on. Sciandra quickly surmised that using a heavy plastic material that had no memory and could be die-cut would allow KanJam to be produced, assembled, packaged, shipped and stored in a most cost-effective manner.

Now it was time to start selling games. During the time that KanJam was selling through local retailers and out of the house, they realized that they met the requirements of school physical education classes, a huge boon for the company. Swisher was instrumental in these early days, developing the school market in his hometown of North Tonawanda, NY and becoming the true ambassador of KanJam. Though deciding to leave the Company in 2006, Swisher continues to run various KanJam tournaments, including the World Championship.

KanJam’s success in the school market allowed them to move out of the house and into a new warehouse. And it’s been nothing but momentum since Mitch Rubin joined Sciandra as co-partner of KanJam, LLC in 2006 and ignited the retail side of the business. The Company has now sold hundreds of thousands of KanJam games; signed on with many premier sporting goods stores; created its fourth retail box in three years as a result of customer demand; produced custom goals and private labeling through major national companies; partnered with advertising agencies to increase brand awareness; established a presence on the web; and employs a legion of independent sales reps.

Sciandra and Rubin work diligently to ensure that all elements to KanJam are made and assembled in the US. Centrally located in Western New York; they pride themselves on being an environmentally friendly company. Determined to leave a positive mark on Americans, KanJam also contributes to various charitable organizations. Their mission is to continue to bring fun games and opportunities to people across America.

Today, KanJam is sold in over 3,000 retail outlets across the country, is used in 2,000 schools as part of the PE curriculum, and is popping up everywhere on YouTube and Facebook pages.

The sky’s the limit for the dynamic duo of Sciandra and Rubin. Think Lennon and McCartney, Jagger and Richards, Ben and Jerry.