Each year the International Franchise Association recognizes one outstanding franchise entrepreneur for their achievements in business, and particularly, franchising. This year, Tariq Farid, CEO of Edible Arrangements International, Inc. was awarded this prestigious honor.
Emigrating from Pakistan to the US in 1969, Farid’s entrepreneurial spirit bloomed at the age of 17 when he used a $5,000 cash advance from his parents to purchase a local flower shop in East Haven, CT. Within two years he was operating on four successful stores, building on his experience from working in a McDonald’s restaurant where he learned the power of business systemization. After realizing the need for quality software systems for management in the retail floral industry, he founded software distributor Netsolace in 1993 and honed his skills with computer systems.
Farid opened the first Edible Arrangements in 1999 and has since expanded the company to more than 800 stores in the US, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Canada and Puerto Rico. He also launched Frutation, another franchise concept, to offer customers an on-the-go option. Lastly, Farid founded the Salma K Farid Academy, Foundation and Welfare Center, a not-for-profit school for the Muslim Community and serves as a member of Deen Inc which seeks to revitalize the inner-city neighborhoods in New Haven.