Benzinga  Dec 26  Comment 
1-800-Flowers.Com Inc (NASDAQ: FLWS) is scheduled to report earnings Jan. 30. The Analyst Northcoast Research's Kara Szafraniec downgraded 1-800-Flowers.com from Buy to Neutral with a $12 price target.  The Thesis Northcoast is...
Benzinga  Jun 14  Comment 
DA Davidson initiated coverage of FTD Companies Inc (NASDAQ: FTD) with a Buy rating and a $22 price target, while 1-800-Flowers.Com Inc (NASDAQ: FLWS) was initiated with a Neutral rating and a $11 price target. Analyst Linda Bolton Weiser...


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1-800-FLOWERS.com is the world’s leading florist and gift retailer. They offer a wide array of products such as flower arrangements, gift baskets, gourmet foods, and many more.


1-800-FLOWERS.com, founded in 1976, is a gift retailer located throughout the United States and is headquartered in Carle Place, New York. It is a family-run business that offers a variety of products such as fresh flowers, gifts, popcorn, gourmet foods, cookies, wines, and chocolates. Products can be bought from several channels such as the internet, franchise stores, and retail floral stores. 1-800-FLOWERS.com operates 1 fulfillment center, 2 floral retail stores, and 104 franchise stores. It is one of the first retailers that used the internet to sell directly to their customers. In the year 1999, the company went public on the NASDAQ stock exchange. The ticker symbol is FLWS.

1-800-FLOWERS.com owns many other companies such as Fannie May Confections, Inc., Cheryl & Co., WineTasting Network, Ambrosia Wine, The Popcorn Factory, Bloomnet, DesignPac Gifts LLC, and Napco Marketing Corporation.

Image:FLWS_Symbol.jpg [1]

Business Segments

Consumer floral, gourmet foods and gift baskets, and BloomNet Wire Service business are the three business segments of 1-800-FLOWERS.com.

The consumer floral segment is part of the namesake 1-800-FLOWERS.com, and accounts for more than half of FLWS's total revenues. They offer all types of flowers and floral arrangements to provide to customers for any type of occasion, it could be for a birthday, funeral, Valentine’s Day, or just for the home. They have high quality flowers and have a 100% satisfaction guarantee to bring a smile to your face.

Gourmet foods and gift baskets are operated by 1-800-BASKETS.com, Fannie May Confections, The Popcorn Factory, and The Winetasting Network. It accounts for more than a third of FLWS's total revenues.They offer wines, gourmet gift baskets, chocolate, candy, and popcorn that are packaged in all sorts of customizable tins and baskets.

BloomNet Wire Service is the company’s electric communication system that allows all the florists to contact each other to send and receive orders. It also allows advertising and the member directories available. It accounts for nearly 10% of FLWS's total revenues and has the highest gross margin among the three business divisions, because FLWS simply acts as a broker between customers and local florists, and collects fees from the florists in return for the lead.

Family of Brands

1-800-FLOWERS.com does not just sell flower arrangements. They own many other companies such as:

Fannie May Confections, Inc. sells premium chocolates and confections that are handmade. They have provided service for over 88 years and have a 100% satisfaction guarantee. It was first opened in 1920 and many years later in 2006 became a subsidiary of 1-800-FLOWERS.com. [2]

Cheryl & Co. operating since 1981 offers many fresh baked gifts and desserts. In the year 2005, they merged with 1-800-FLOWERS.com. [3]

1-800-BASKETS.com specializes in selling gift baskets on the internet. Each gift basket is specially designed and handmade. In 2001, became a member of 1-800-FLOWERS.com. [4]

The Popcorn Factory has been selling high quality popcorn that is grown right here in the United States since 1979. They pop over one million pounds of popcorn a year. [5]

Winetasting.com is located in Napa Valley and has been around since 1991. The company has a strong reputation of high superiority wine at a value price. They are a wholly owned subsidiary of 1-800-FLOWERS.com. [6]


Porter's 5 Forces

Competitive Rivalry

1-800-FLOWERS.com’s main competitors are FTD, Inc., Harry & David Holdings, Inc., and Teleflora LLC. FTD, Inc. is owned by United Online (UNTD), which also partners with Interflora. FTD, Inc. offers floral arrangements, gourmet foods, greeting cards, balloons, candles, and etc. Harry & David Holdings, Inc., a private company, offers gift baskets, chocolate, fruit, wine, and etc. Lastly, Teleflora LLC focuses on just floral arrangements and is a privately held company.

1-800-FLOWERS.com is not only competing with them but is also competing with local floral stores in people’s neighborhoods and grocery stores. Many people buy their flowers from local flower shops in their city because of the convenience and price. The customer is able to pick out exactly it is what they want and they know the condition of the flowers that they are sending. In addition, people pick up floral arrangements at grocery stores either for the cheap price or they are shopping last minute and it is on their way. However, they are not getting the best quality and freshness that 1-800-FLOWERS.com is able to offer. They guarantee that your flowers will be fresh and have a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Also, the customer cannot beat the convenience of being able to shop online at home.

Threat of Substitute Products or Services

The threat of substitutes is high. Customers have many options of places where to buy their floral arrangements or gifts from. There are many other websites online where you can order flowers or gift baskets online. Or they can even go to their local neighborhood flower shop and even grocery store.

In addition, many people do not like receiving flowers as gifts because they only last a week and then they are gone. So, customers might decide to get another type of gift that will last forever unlike food or flowers.

Bargaining Power of Buyers

The bargaining power of buyers is high. Floral arrangements and gift baskets are not something that people need to live with. It is something extra that people go out of their way to do. This makes them extremely sensitive to prices. If the economy is doing bad not many people are going to be spending $50 just on flowers. They can find other types of gift ideas for much less of a price. Or they could even go find cheaper, less quality of flowers at their local grocery store.

Bargaining Power of Suppliers

The bargaining power of suppliers is low. 1-800-FLOWERS.com works directly with professional florists who are part of their BloomNet wire service network. They work with premiere farms that follow safe environment practices and that are certified by industry leading agencies such as Fair Trade, Ascoflores, Green Label Program, and many more. 1-800-FLOWERS.com works personally with their farmers and visits them on a regular basis to make sure that they are following their standards to make sure they are giving their customers the best of the best. [7]

Barriers to Entry

The threat of entry is somewhat high. It is very easy for a company to start up and sell flowers and gift baskets. However, 1-800-FLOWERS.com has a very strong brand image and they are the world’s leading florist and gift retailer. It would be hard for a company to be able to surpass them and do better. Not only that, but they are partners with many different companies such as The Popcorn Factory, Winetasting.com, and many others. This allows them to offer more variety than most other companies would be able to offer their customers. [8] However, major online retailers such as Amazon.com or even national brick-and-mortar retailers with extensive local distribution network can potentially enter the market.



1-800-FLOWERS.com has many strengths such as a strong brand equity, low capital requirements, growing market share, and a strong balance sheet.

Strong Brand Equity 1-800-FLOWERS.com has an exceptionally strong brand image, they are world’s leading florist and gift retailer. They know how to take care of their customers and are always making sure that they are receiving the best of the best quality. They have a business practice of having a 100% smile guarantee. If they are not happy with their purchase they will receive their full money back. They insure that their customers receive the highest quality of flowers by picking flowers from the top growers around the world. Not only that, but they have a repeat order rate from customers over 50%. Compared to their competitors they have lower capital requirements.

Growing Market Share 1-800-FLOWERS.com is expanding their market share by offering so many different types of products to order. The gifts range from flowers to foods to candles so that the customer is sure to find some type of gift that will fit the person that they are shopping for. This allows them to attain more of their customer’s money. 1-800-FLOWERS.com is also available around the United States which makes it very easy for customers to send gifts out to their friends, family, and coworkers.


A weakness of 1-800-FLOWERS.com is that they are a part of many different companies that offer a variety of products and they are losing their image of just selling flowers. The Gourmet Food and Gift Basket division of FLWS is generating higher gross margin for the company (partly because gift baskets are less perishable, making inventory management much more efficient) , but it can potentially dilute the brand. A customer might just want to order flowers, but when going on the website they are bombarded with all different companies and many different options. This can be frustrating for a customer who just wants to do a quick simple purchase without having to look at all those other options. In 2010, FLWS terminated its post-sale third party marketing program despite its high profit margin, partly for consideration that customers may be upset by unsolicited marketing calls from third parties unrelated to FLWS.


1-800-FLOWERS.com has the opportunity to expand throughout the United States. Currently, they are only located throughout 12 states and could easily expand because they are a franchise. There are only around 75 locations and could still keep growing.

Image:Flwslocations.jpg [9]


One threat to 1-800-FLOWERS.com is the other competitors that they have to compete with. They have to compete with FTD, Inc., Harry & David Holdings, Inc., and Teleflora LLC. Not only that, but they have to compete with local florists shops and grocery stores. Flowers can be bought from many different options. However, 1-800-FLOWERS.com offers a variety of choices and is very convenient and easy to use.

Another threat is the economy. The United State’s economy is not at its best and many Americans are out of their jobs right now. They are not able to afford to buy people flowers and gifts as much as they would like to.

Financial Metrics



Comparing 1-800-FLOWERS.com to the industry there is a big difference in revenue. 1-800-FLOWERS.com revenue is about 8.5 times larger than the industry. Also, they have a larger amount of employees working for them because they are such a big company compared to most other floral retailers. They have a high EBITDA which is a benefit because it leads to a more profitable operation and there are less operating expenses. Unfortunately, they have a very low operating margin compared to the industry which means that not much revenue is left over after variable costs are paid.

Recent Quarter Highlights

Third Quarter 2011

Total revenues were $162.8 million which grew 4.7% mainly because of the Valentine’s Day holiday. There was an increase to EBITDA which totaled $4.1 million. Earnings per share increase 5 cents per share. [11]

Second Quarter 2011

In this quarter there was a decrease in promotional activities and an enhanced efficiency in manufacturing, this lead to an increase in gross profit margin of 20 basis points. In addition, there was a decrease of $2.7 million in operating expenses from continuing operations. [12]

First Quarter 2011

Operating expenses were $46.7 million and earnings per share of $0.09. There was an increase of 130 basis points in gross profit margin which was 41.7%. Revenue from continuing operations decreased from $108.3 million to $104.5 million. [13]

Human Resources

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[14] 1-800-FLOWERS.com looks for employees who are looking to stay with the company for a long period of time. There are better rewards and compensation for employees who stay with the company for a longer period of time. 1-800-FLOWERS.com searches for employees who, “come to you because they want to work with your company, they believe in what your organization is about, they want to grow with it, and they understand there’s a big mark they can make there.” [15]

The Human Resources Department created a “Leadership Development Program.” This program is to work with the employees in management and asking them about the people that work above them. This way they can closely watch how they are working with others and make sure that they are able to develop and reach a higher level in their career. The employees that are selected for this program are then given reading material to study and trained to insure that they can make it to the next big step. 1-800-FLOWERS.com is investing in these employees and making sure that they will help the company grow.

Lastly, employees are part of an employee wellness program that offers discounts to gyms, free cholesterol screenings, and etc.

Marketing Strategies

The 1-800-FLOWERS.com brand comes with a multi-million dollar national advertising campaign. They advertise over the television, radio, internet, and newspaper. In the year 1992 was when the company first appeared online and then three years later had their website up and running. The website has relationships with other online services such as Yahoo!, America Online, and Microsoft Network. Currently, they are expanding their efforts in to social networking and mobile commerce. They can be seen on Facebook and Twitter.

1-800-FLOWERS.com is a world class franchise. With the support of their franchises they have earned the highest possible honor that any franchise company can earn. 1-800-FLOWERS.com searches for business partners that have the same values as them such as discovering new products, service that sells, and commitment to excellence.

When opening up a new 1-800-FLOWERS.com store it already comes with a Grand Opening Marketing Plan. It is a business plan that helps bring in new customers and raise store awareness. There is a retail marketing team that works with the new flower shop to help plan marketing events in the city to bring in customers. [16]


  1. 1-800-FLOWERS.com Symbol
  2. 100% Satisfaction Guaranteed
  3. Cheryl & Co.
  4. 1-800-BASKETS.com
  5. The Popcorn Factory
  6. Winetasting.com
  7. Going Green
  8. Owner of a Variety Companies
  9. Locations throughout United States
  10. Yahoo! Finance
  11. Third Quarter 2011
  12. Second Quarter 2011
  13. First Quarter 2011
  14. www.finance.yahoo.com
  15. Human Resources
  16. Marketing
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