This is a partial transcript from Your World with Neil Cavuto, May 6, 2003, that was edited for clarity. Click here for complete access to all of Neil Cavuto's CEO interviews.
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NEIL CAVUTO, HOST: Well, to all the moms out there, it is time to get pampered. With Mother’s Day (search) just around the corner, the 1-800-Flowers.com is preparing to handle all the gift orders this year, including flowers, candy baskets, gourmet foods, the soup to nuts.
Anyway, are they participating and anticipating busy days to come? Let’s ask Jim McCann, 1-800-Flowers chairman and CEO. By the way, that was him ringing the opening bell on Nasdaq to celebrate Bring Your Mom to Work Day.
MCCANN: We had a lot of moms there this morning to help ring the bell.
CAVUTO: Did you really? You have got a thing for marketing, you kind of know it, don’t you?
MCCANN: Well, something like that is so easy and fun it just falls into your lap. People at OCRF, the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund (search) are looking for a way to get some attention and some fundraising, locked onto an idea we had three years ago as a fun little idea to bring your mom to work, try and get some of that good spirit around this time of the year, like we saw with bring your daughter and children to work. So a funny idea turned into a great fundraiser for OCRF. And I had the task of hanging around with Miss Universe this morning, Miss USA, who we hope will become Miss Universe, and working with Betsy Bernard over at AT&T.
CAVUTO: But actually you are saying your business has actually been picking up lately.
MCCANN: Lord knows it has been. For a long time, as a small company, as you know, Neil, we didn’t think we participated relative to the performance of the economy. And as we get a little larger, we did. And so if we are any indication, I think we are off to a good spring. You just talked about a whole bunch of stories that were good news, except, of course, for losing Maxim and FHM from the Wal-Mart shelves, but all the rest of it is seriously good news.
CAVUTO: So I wonder if there is a connect between more people ordering flowers and the economy percolating again, for example, on the downside, when the economy was really iffy, did you see a freeze in that sort of thing?
MCCANN: Well, we tend to trade in a little narrower band. So when things are roaring, 1999, 2000, we weren’t growing in hundreds of percentages, but we were growing in a 30 percent, 40 percent range. But we’ve never had less than a double-digit gain either. So I think we’ve traded in a narrower band. But if it is any indication, whether it’s all the good news that people hear about on your show, about some indicators, like you just went through, or, you know, maybe this is the bottom and there is spring time arriving in some places in the country, we see a definite pop this week.
CAVUTO: Now Mother’s Day, versus some other holidays, how does it rank?
MCCANN: Well, Mother’s Day is the biggest floral holiday we have. It’s the second biggest holiday. And as a retailer we are fortunate. We have the fourth calendar quarter, and this the second calendar quarter, our two big quarters, the January, February, March with Valentine’s Day a little bit better. And we think that even this year and next, we can make the summer a pretty good quarter, too because we are not only floral gifts now. We have other gifts as well that are appropriate.
CAVUTO: Men or women doing most of the buying for moms?
MCCANN: Well, people are surprised, but even this week, the majority of our customers year-round are female, Valentine’s Day switches back to majority male. This week majority female. They’re buying on behalf of the household.
CAVUTO: By a big margin?
MCCANN: Probably by 65-35.
CAVUTO: Now, I was asking an AT&T representative this not too long ago, do you accompany that with calls and seeing people, or all you know, get the flowers out and call it a day?
MCCANN: Well, as Betsy Bernard said this morning at the Nasdaq opening, it’s the busiest day of the year for them, and the busiest day of the year for us.
CAVUTO: All right. Well, we wish you luck, Jim McCann, 1-800-Flowers.com, the chairman and CEO, hangs around Miss Universe. He’s getting it done.
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