1-800 Flowers franchise owners recently united to form the Independent Florist Franchisee Association (IFFA) to promote the interests of the approximately 150 owner-operators of the 1-800 Flowers system. The group’s mission is “to foster open communications with our Franchisor and find mutually beneficial solutions for growing the franchise group including best practices, profitability strategies and group benefits through unified voice.”
In a release announcing the IFFA’s formation, Association President Judy Sicola, who owns four Houston-area 1-800-Flowers stores said, “We want to be certain that the franchisees have a voice when it comes to properly planning for the continued growth and strength of the 1-800-Flowers brand and we believe that IFFA can be instrumental in helping those efforts.”
The launch of the IFFA comes as more and more franchisees across the country are forming independent associations to protect their sizeable personal investments. Eleven states protect franchisees’ right to organize franchisee associations: Arkansas, California, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Washington. Those laws give some protection when franchisors target “outspoken” franchisees, as some 7-Eleven franchisees say their franchisor has done or terminate franchisee association board members, as Quiznos franchisees have charged.
The new IFFA website is still under construction, but the association is encouraging 1-800 Flowers franchisees to sign up for the email list.