Jim McCann of 1-800-Flowers on Strategic Partnerships
At 1-800-Flowers, we’ve built our business mainly in three ways: promotions, public relations, and partnering with other businesses. Over the years, we’ve partnered with big names like Martha Stewart, IBM, and Google. Their reputations are widely known. But we’ve also developed relationships with smaller, privately held companies.
One example is an Austin-based company called Digby. They’ve helped us develop mobile applications that allow customers to order flowers and gifts from an iPhone or BlackBerry. We had worked with them before on some smaller projects, but we still did some due diligence by talking to references as well as some of their venture backers whom we know and who assured us that they were upstanding people. You can also tell a lot about a company by its leader. Dave Sikora, the founder and CEO of Digby, has a good spirit and good attitude. He’s a can-do kind of guy. He knows the space better than most, and that comforts me.