1-800-Flowers.com: Collaborating with Suppliers
(8 pages of text)
1-800-Flowers.com was a market leader in the floral gift industry, offering solutions for everyday gift needs as well as for special occasions. The U.S. company’s mission was to “deliver smiles” to its customers by designing and delivering innovative and valuable gifts. 1-800-Flowers.com had a very good brand in terms of floral distribution. However, the online market for flower and gift sales was changing rapidly, presenting new opportunities for efficiencies and market expansion. In March 2012, the company's chief executive officer was faced with a pressing decision. How could 1-800-Flowers.com gain competitive advantage through collaborations with the extended supply chain?
This case fits well in a supply chain elective course under supply chain configuration. In particular, the case can be used to discuss fulfillment challenges in an e-commerce and omni-channel business, as well as the power of supply chain collaborations.
Students can use this case to:
- illustrate the challenges associated with managing a supply chain offering a variety of products with fundamentally different characteristics, and the challenges in leveraging supply chain capabilities across such products;
- highlight key aspects to consider when thinking about supply chain collaboration and integration, identifying the costs and benefits of different types of collaboration/integration; and
- demonstrate how supply chain strategies can be used to obtain competitive advantage.
United States, Large, 2012
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