53. Floom

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Founders: Lana Elie
Founded: July 2015 (Launched February 2016)
Website: www.floom.com

This is the second appearance in the Startups 100 index for Floom, the online marketplace for independent florists.

The business was borne out of founder Lana Elie’s frustration of trying to buy beautiful flowers from independents and larger online destinations.

Independent florists suffered from an outdated offline buying process, whilst online conglomerates often gave bad customer service because they’d monopolised the market and knew the customer had nowhere else to go.

Floom, a Startups Awards People’s champion finalist, allows florists to upload images of their own products so customers can see exactly what they are buying from source.

This nifty solution has won the start-up a wealth of fans in the form of the general public, celebrities like Naomi Campbell, Jamie Oliver and Amanda Holden, and businesses such as L’Oréal and Barclays.

Elie, who has written about her experiences of starting a business in a blog for Startups.co.uk, has a history in the fashion industry. She began her career as a personal assistant at Burberry before working as a digital producer, eventually becoming head of brand solutions at “one of the most venerated fashion institutions of the past three-plus decades”.

This fashion background has no-doubt helped Elie’s business thrive with a keen eye for detail and an understanding what makes for a winning bouquet in the UK and abroad.

2018 has already seen Floom launch in New York, and Elie tells us that she plans to consolidate Floom’s position in the $20bn market there by expanding its supply offering.

There are also hints of launches in other cities across the Atlantic by the end of the year.

Alongside this, a number of key hires will bolster its tech for both customers and florists and improve its marketing.

While these are big ambitions, Elie doesn’t plan on stopping there and is intent on replacing FTD (Interflora) as the dominant online flower provider. We’re sure Floom will be coming up roses!

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