What does Westmoreland County’s Cleaveland/Price, a switch engineering and manufacturing firm, have in common with Google, Amazon, and Disney? They are all companies that started in a home and grew into major success stories!
Cleaveland/Price’s story began in 1975 when Westinghouse employee Charles Cleaveland began manufacturing renewal parts for discontinued Westinghouse switches in the basement of his North Huntingdon home. In 1976 Cleaveland parted ways with Westinghouse to focus on Cleaveland/Price, and with five kids his mother was worried. Cleaveland’s mom wouldn’t need to worry for long. In 1980 Cleaveland's business moved out of his home and into its new headquarters 12 miles away in Trafford.
1975 Westinghouse Letter
Westinghouse informed customers Cleaveland/Price would be supplying renewal parts for discontinued switches.
Every inch of Cleaveland’s basement served a purpose. Here a bench is used as a base for a blueprint machine
Chuck Cleaveland’s wife, Gerry, kept busy in the basement working on bills and invoices on a typewriter.
Neighbors Get Involved
Cleaveland wanted to keep the neighbors happy, so he employed their children to work on assembling products in his basement.
The second part of Cleaveland/Price’s successful equation is making sure there are “no unhappy customers.” “The first thing we do is establish a relationship with the customer. If they have a problem, we solve it,” said Cleaveland. This ideology has led to the development of many products at Cleaveland/Price. The company boasts a diverse portfolio of outdoor group operated switches, along with switch control motor operators, and all are manufactured on site.
One last piece of advice Cleaveland has for continual success, “I would encourage other companies to focus on improving their relations with employees which will result in better productivity.”
You can visit the Cleaveland/Price website for more information on the company.