ORLANDO, Fla. -- World Commerce Online Inc. subsidiary Floraplex here has formed a cooperative agreement with Flower Auction Aalsmeer, Aalsmeer, Netherlands, creating the means for wholesalers worldwide to purchase directly from the growers who sell through one of Europe's principle flower auctions.
The agreement provides buyers and wholesalers in the United States with a larger product selection by opening access to African and Middle Eastern product, according to Greg Turner, director of marketing communications for World Commerce.
"Traditionally, the Flower Auction in Holland brings in product from all over Africa and the Middle East and distributes it throughout Europe," said Turner. "Now wholesale florists all over the world have access to that product."
"Flower Auction Aalsmeer represents an important component of the modern floral industry," said Nils van Beek, Floraplex' vice president of sales and product marketing for Europe, Africa and the Middle East. "Our strategy seeks to merge past and future, and Floraplex functions as a technological bridge that enables us to do just that."
According to company officials, the system essentially allows growers to communicate what products they have for sale on a worldwide level, while also serving as a means for interested buyers to access product not previously available to them.
"This is an important step toward developing our European market, a key component in Floraplex' global strategy," said Keith Money, chief marketing officer at Floraplex. "Aalsmeer is the epicenter of the international flower business. The Dutch export more than 65% of the world's flowers, and the Flower Auction Aalsmeer is synonymous with the Dutch flower trade."
In addition to trading opportunities, the Floraplex Web site provides the latest news in the industry, advertising opportunities and a different showcased product each day. It also provides daily flower facts, which include a picture of the flower and information like country of origin, availability, colors, vase life and storage. It also lists points of interest for growers, wholesalers/shippers and retailers.
"Our goal is to truly connect the entire global [floral] industry and provide them with a platform for exchange," said Turner.
World Commerce Online was founded in 1996 to create global commercial networks and trading systems, of which Floraplex was the first.