Clover is primarily a Tier II automotive parts supplier, supporting the Tier I that, in turn, supplies OEMs such as Ford, Honda, Stellantis, GM, etc. Our company consists of three key manufacturing areas:
- We design and build tooling for use in manufacturing parts.
- We manufacture parts through our stamping process, which consists of over 30 presses ranging from 100 tons to 1,650 tons in two facilities. The stamping process can be either hand transfer stamping, coil feed stamping, or blank feed transfer stamping.
- We provide value-added processes such as nut insertion, stud insertion, robotic mig-welding, and robotic tig-welding, to name a few.
Our three areas allow us to provide our customers with the complete package from start to finish without having to go to multiple companies on any given project. Clover’s goal is to provide defect-free parts.
Over the years, Clover has expanded its customer base to include the HVAC industry, castor industry, steel door industry, and more.
Tell us about yourself?
Frank Zeni is the founder of our company, and I was working in the banking industry while still in university. Upon completing my university degree, I went directly into the business, starting on the shop floor and then moving to various departments and learning in each area.
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Invest in Amazon, Tesla, and industrial real estate… LOL
There is no reason to go back in time and give yourself advice. You should always look forward and accept the past as it has happened.
What problem does your business solve?
Our company is resourceful and able to adapt to the changing needs of the customer. We take on challenging projects where our competition shies away.
What is the inspiration behind your business?
The inspiration behind the business came from our founder, who didn’t want to answer to the hierarchy, especially to people whose motivation was to make money over the welfare of others. Our business started as a tool and die shop, supplying tooling for the automotive industry and other industries. It quickly grew to supply stampings and assemblies and incorporated new technologies to improve productivity such as robots. It is an industry that continues to change, and you continue to learn new things.
What is your magic sauce?
Clover provides a competitive price for its services and products while offering the ability to provide customers with a wide range of products by investing in capital equipment and technology. This allows Clover to take on larger programs where the competition is not willing or comfortable in making such commitments.
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
The plan over the next five years (which we have begun) is to expand into larger presses and automation. This will allow Clover to bid on larger packages that provide opportunities for value-added processes and margins. Part of this expansion is to be ready for the growth that is expected in the EV and battery markets.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
The biggest challenge is to manage and plan for the future of skilled trades. There is a gap that needs to be filled, and the only way is to invest in education and training for your personnel. They are your biggest asset. We pride ourselves in trying to stay ahead of the competition when introducing flex hours and working from home in an industry that runs 24/7 and assembly work. It is not easy, but it is satisfying to see everyone happy (almost everyone) at the end of the day.
How can people get involved?
We are always looking to expand our customer base and partner with good companies. If something needs quoting or you want to move from your existing supplier, email me at email@example.com or go to our website at www.clovertoolmfg.com.