1-800-Flowers.com, Inc. is a floral and gourmet foods gift retailer and distribution company in the United States. It was one of the first retailers to use a 24 x 7 toll-free telephone number and the Internet for direct sales to consumers.
The concept of using the word "flowers" within a Phoneword was originated by William Alexander in the early 1980s. The phone number, 1-800-356-9377, had been assigned to a trucking brokerage in Wisconsin and was used for that company until 1981. Granville Semmes and David Snow formed a corporation which began to use that number to sell flowers in 1982. Their business struggled and that company was dissolved, with its assets going to investors James Poage and John Davis of Texas. In turn, this new corporation struggled financially as well. Its assets were acquired in 1986 by Jim McCann, an owner of several flower shops in the New York City area since 1976, under whom the business saw success and growth.
In the early 1990s, two events helped bring 1-800-Flowers to national prominence. First, AT&T created an advertising campaign featuring the company that aired repeatedly during the 1992 Summer Olympics. Second, at the time of the first Persian Gulf War, many advertisers were pulling out of CNN, unaware that CNN's war coverage would draw additional viewers. 1-800-Flowers agreed to remain as an advertiser at founder Ted Turner's request.
The company was among the first retailers to partner with CompuServe and AOL, in 1992 and 1994 respectively. On September 1, 1995, the company registered the 1800flowers.com domain name. In 1999, the company went public on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the ticker symbol FLWS and changed its name to 1-800-FLOWERS.COM, to match its web site address.
The company has merged with or acquired a number of other gift and retailing companies. In September 2007, the company announced a partnership with Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia to produce a line of floral products inspired by Martha Stewart. In August 2011, the company acquired Flowerama, a Waterloo-based floral retailer with 100 locations in 28 states.
According to the Consumerist in 2008, customers have reported unknowingly being subscribed to LiveWell after receiving rebate checks from 1-800-flowers.
It had 4,000 employees as of 2008, with a market cap of $119 Million USD.
For a few weeks in fall 2009, 1-800-Flowers.com sponsored the Entertainment Tonight birthday segment.
In 2009, profit was US$714 Million. Operating income wasUS$-72.2 Million, net income was US$-98.4 Million, assets were valued at US$286 Million, and equity was at US$134 Million.
The company is headquartered in Carle Place, New York, on Long Island.
The company fills its orders in two ways: through a network of florists and through drop shipments. It established a florist-to-florist network called BloomNet, and is one of several floral wire services in the country today.Fannie May Confections, Inc. - a chocolate and confectionery company based in Chicago, IL. Also owns the brands Harry London Candies and Fanny Farmer Chocolate
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Stock Yards - an online retailer of steak, chops, and other meats and seafood
1-800-Baskets.com - an online retailer of gift baskets
DesignPac Gifts LLC - a designer and maker of gourmet gift baskets
The Popcorn Factory - a catalog retailer of popcorn tins and snacks based in Lake Forest, IL
BloomNet - an international floral wire service
FruitBouquets.com - Online retailer of fruit bouquets
FineStationery.com - Online retailer of customizable invitations and personal stationery
Napco Marketing Corporation - wholesale distributor of floral and plant containers and related supplies for the florist and mass market channels.
Florists.com - Flower delivery via local florists
Digital Leadership Program - Executive training program.
On July 21, 2008, 1-800-Flowers purchased Napco Marketing Corporation, a wholesale distributor of floral and plant containers and related supplies for the florist and mass market channels.
On April 30, 2008, 1-800-Flowers purchased DesignPac Gifts LLC, a gourmet gift basket maker for $36 million USD in cash.