Kendama Co was founded by brothers Sam and Lex Uhlmann in the early summer of 2010, making Kendama Co the second Kendama company to enter the market. Kendama Co was founded due to the unavailability of kendamas in the United States. When I(Sam) first got into Kendama there really was no where to buy Kendamas aside from sites based in Japan. I got into kendama from a friend of Lex and I’s in the ski community who had returned home from a trip where one of the crew that was on the ski trip was fiddling around with a kendama. Our friend(Eben Wragge-Keller) became hooked on kendama during the trip and when he returned he showed the two of us kendama and I became immediately hooked. After quite a long time(1 ½ + years) of bringing my kendamas everywhere I went, annoying my parents with constant clacking, and a looming business entrepreneurship project, I began to follow through on my idea to start a kendama company of my own. After about six months of contacting manufacturers and having several fall through, I struck luck on a graduation trip my mom took me on to Amsterdam. Whilewandering around the canals my mom came across a window full of kendamas. . We walked in and standing behind the counter was David Marchant, the founder of Sunrise Kendama. David had received his first batch of Sunrise a few weeks before and the two of us struck a deal for him to be our distributor. We made our first purchase and in suitcases brought home 250 Sunrises and 100 Ozoras. Lex and I had always talked about going into business with one another and with his technological know-how we partnered up for him to create the website for the company. The first year was pretty slow but then almost overnight the scene took off. We began producing our own brand, Shenzhu, and then moved on to developing our new product, the Zen.
Our mission since day one has been to spread kendama as best as we can and to hold true to our original ambitions we had with the company. Today we employee our good friends and kendama gods, Kris Bosch and Dan Robinson, and couldn’t be happier with our companies development over the years.