A Seattle flotation therapy business with locations in Kirkland, Renton, and Tacoma will appear on an episode of the ABC TV show Shark Tank this Sunday, March 17.
Urban Float, which bills itself as Seattle’s first “flotation therapy spa,” opened its first corporate location in Fremont in 2013. It added new stores in Kirkland, Renton and Capitol Hill in 2014, 2015, and 2017, respectively. The company has franchised locations in Tacoma and Vancouver, Washington, as well as several out-of-state locations including Ohio, Texas, and Delaware.
Urban Float CEO Scott Swerland and Chief Operating Officer Joe Beaudry represented the company on the show and appeared before the “sharks,” the panel of entrepreneurs and investors who vie for a stake in the companies that appear on the show — if the pitches are convincing enough.
Swerland said a producer for Shark Tank reached out to the company after reading about them in Entrepreneur magazine to see if they’d be interested in appearing on an episode of the show.
“I refer to Shark Tank as the Super Bowl of business shows,” Swerland said. “There’s nine to 11 million viewers and really what we’re trying to do is get out there and share the positive experiences that our customers have had with floating and to sell franchises around the country and the world. And we figured Shark Tank was a great medium to do that.”
Swerland, a self-described adrenaline junkie, said walking onto the floor in front of the judges was a “total, awesome, out-of-body experience.”
“I was literally watching myself from up above,” he said. “It was a total, out-of-body, awesome, Super Bowl-style experience for me.”
Swerland can’t talk specifics about what transpired on the show until after the episode airs, but he said of the five “sharks” present, Lori Greiner served as a calming presence.
“[She] always had a smile, and she was kind of my guardian angel on the panel,” he said. “I can’t talk to you about, was there a deal or was there no deal, but she was very calming and I’m glad that she was there.”
In the end, Swerland said appearing on Shark Tank was a great experience.
“We’re really excited about spreading the gospel of floating and its positive benefits in this hyperconnected world that we live in,” he said.
Urban Float’s customers float in pods filled with purified water and 1,200 pounds of Epsom salt that’s heated to match the temperature of the human body’s skin, said Gabe Goldberg, the company’s chief marketing officer.
“It becomes difficult to tell where your body ends and the water begins,” he said.
The company’s clientele ranges from professional and casual athletes to corporate workers, Goldberg said. Floating can be mentally restorative, help manage pain or reduce emotional stress, he said. A number of peer reviewed studies have demonstrated the benefits of floating for addressing such problems, he added.