Floward is a full-fledged e-commerce solution offering same day delivery of prime fresh-cut flowers and accompanying gifts from local and international brands.
Aside from sourcing the flowers directly from the best farms around the world, the entire supply chain is fully integrated and managed by Floward. Through our in-house team of florists, we prepare and fulfil all our arrangements. We also partner with different brands to offer luxury gifts alongside our flowers and manage last mile delivery.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
The fresh-cut flowers industry is estimated at USD 1.5 billion in the GCC, the industry is very fragmented with hundreds of traditional brick and mortar retail stores and no clear leader. We saw this as a great opportunity for us, so in 2017 we launched Floward, the name is a mix of the English and Arabic words for flowers, to fill this great gap of offering flower delivery online that matches the client’s expectations. Following our great success in the Middle East, we expanded our offering to the UK in 2021.
With e-commerce penetration in the UK representing 40% of all retail revenue, and the flowers industry in London alone equaling to the GCC’s, we felt there was a gifting experience gap in the market that was attractive for us to fill and export our experience from the MENA region.
In order to set us apart from an already crowded UK market, we make sure to provide the fastest same day delivery service in London, which we’ve found is essential in today’s busy, digital world for those looking for last-minute gifts. We also offer our customers the option of including a video message with their gifts, which can be viewed by the recipient via a unique QR code – making them the perfect, personal gift that’s unique for every customer.
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How has the company evolved over the last couple of years?
Since launching, Floward has become the largest flower business in the whole of the Middle East in just under four years and, following our successful launch in London earlier last year, we now operate in 37 cities across nine countries with a team of over 900 members that service our 1 million users.
Last year we partnered with our first UK based charity, Mental Health Foundation (MHF), the UK’s leading charity for mental health. As part of the partnership, we committed to donate 1% of our annual sales in 2021 to the charity. More recently, we have partnered with the Royal Versailles Ball and collaborated with British Airways to design an installation of the Queen in their airport lounge at Heathrow. We’re proud to be expanding our network and awareness around the world.
With only USD34 million raised, Floward has positioned itself as the leading gifting platform across the different markets we operate in. We’ve also recently grown as a team and have expanded our management to include leadership from the UK to help support Floward’s growth this year and beyond.
What can we hope to see from Floward in the future?
We are currently very focused on expanding our gifting verticals by providing a wider selection to our one million customer base. Everything we do is with our clients in mind, so making sure we’re not only thinking globally, but locally to resonate with our clients is crucial.
We’ve grown our revenue by more than 40 times since 2020, so we’re excited to continue on this path and be able to offer bespoke luxury flowers and gifts to customers internationally. As we continue to grow, we are always looking into new and innovative ways to diversify our offerings and add new verticals to our service in addition to attracting high-caliber talents to join us and help take Floward to the next level.
We are always looking to expand our CSR commitment with different organisations and forge new partnerships and will be working with more influencer designers across the year to grow our digital presence and collaborate with further brands to expand our presence.