Daley and Saunders Rose to the Top: Welch Florist Voted among Top 20 Businesses in New England

Keith Saunders and David Daley of Welch Florist are pictured at the store located at 121 Essex St. in Lynn.

Keith Saunders and David Daley of Welch Florist are pictured at the store located at 121 Essex St. in Lynn.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year at Welch Florist in Lynn.

Residents are selecting their floral arrangements for the Christmas season and co-owners David Daley and Keith Saunders are basking in the glow of receiving two  major awards for excellence.

Market Surveys of America selected Welch Florist as the Best Florist in the city for the 17th consecutive year in a row. Meanwhile, the Best Business of America organization named Welch Florist as one of the top 20 best florists in all of New England.

“We’re really proud,” said Saunders. “It truly shows that the small mom-and-pop operation does have a chance and is in existence.”

Welch Florist, originally owned by Tom and Margaret Welch, has been continuously operating in Lynn since 1947. Daley and Saunders purchased Welch Florist in 1987. After selling the business in 2005, Daley and Saunders left Lynn and relocated to Naples, Florida, but after 26 months in the Sunshine State, they moved back to the area and bought back Welch Florist.

“We really weren’t happy in Florida – we were very sorry we sold the business,” said Daley. “We came back to Massachusetts and we bought the business back. Honestly, we missed Lynn, we missed the business, the people, and everything. We reinvested all of our money back into the city of Lynn. We bought back the building and the business.”

The reception upon the Daley-Saunders ownership team’s return to Lynn was heartwarming.

“All of our customers returned to us and we got a tremendous response,” said Daley. “We never knew that we were so well liked by our customers.”

“The response was overwhelming,” recalled Saunders. “It was so great.”

What has been the foundation to their success?

“Quality flowers, excellent service, and fair prices,” said Daley.

Generations of customers have made Welch Florist their stop for all floral occasions for many years.

“We have customers who came here when their children were born, when they had their graduations, proms, and weddings – you get very close to your customers because you have relationships with your long-term customers,” said Daley. “We take care of our customers and they’re very loyal to us.”

December is a busy month at Welch Florist where Christmas centerpieces, floral arrangements, roses, carnations, and fruit baskets are selling very well.

“From Thanksgiving on, it gets very busy,” said Daley. “We’re busy the whole month of December. A lot of customers are seniors and they give us their shopping list to send Christmas arrangements or fruit and gourmet baskets. We provide delivery also so we can take care of anybody’s Christmas list.”

After a brief hiatus in Florida, it became clear again that the two gentlemen running Welch Florist love this city – and their customers are glad they’re here to stay.

“It’s been a good year – we’re showing signs of the economy improving,” said Saunders, who noted that Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14) is the busiest day of the year.

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