It’s no secret that FTD has changed their business model in recent years to focus on getting national orders and direct shipping instead of using local independent floral shops to fill them. As a florist, that decision seemed to be counter-productive for its wire service members because FTD was also selling their own flowers and bypassing florists by urging consumers to order directly from the FTD or ProFlowers websites instead of through their affiliated members.
But, an even bigger head-scratcher is watching such a well-established company turn over its entire top management team in a little over a year and then announcing an aggressive five-year strategy that was abandoned only six months later. As an investor, I would have serious concerns: as a florist, I just feel disappointment and frustration.
For the sake of the industry, I really hope that FTD can finally get things turned around, but I don’t see how that can happen until they start promoting florist-based orders - which is exactly what Teleflora, their biggest competitor, has been doing all along.
Many florists rely on both Teleflora and FTD to send and fill orders through their wire services, but there is little doubt which of the two companies is actually helping the local florist. There is so much competition out there that the only way local florists can survive is by working together. We need and deserve better efforts from FTD.