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PRISM 36 inch industrial paper cutter with Microcut back guage control.

The Prism is compact and loaded with electronics technology thanks to the automated Microcut® computer control system.

March 09, 2016

Avanzado makes advances in finishing department with new Colter & Peterson Prism paper cutter

In less than 12 years, Avanzado has grown to become one of the largest minority-owned digital print and communication solution providers in the Midwest. They did so by developing and expanding a next generation Automated Marketing Platform (AMP) with print sales to service a Who’s Who corporate client roster. Seeing an opportunity to manage growth and improve efficiencies to their backend operation, company leaders recently purchased a new Prism 36” paper cutter from Colter & Peterson that is exceeding all expectations.

Located in Farmington Hills, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, Avanzado means “advanced” in Spanish. A sophisticated IT Department drives the business, developing marketing campaigns while interfacing with ad agencies and co-op companies. They collaborate to create content – everything from email, social media and direct mail to custom program aspects such as coupons and database management – right through transaction.

The popular direct mail program continues to zoom upwards, producing over 40 million pieces annually. Avanzado houses three Xerox iGen digital presses to handle their print department workload. With two aging paper cutters nearing their life expectancies and looking for a solution to handle 8-10% yearly growth, Avanzado management did their homework, performed some recon and found a gem with the 36” Prism paper cutter.

“We had two Baum 31.5” paper cutters since 2008 that were showing their age. Our business has grown and we were in need of a substantial machine,” remarked Craig Frye, the President/CEO who signed off on the purchase. “We did some research and our lead bindery person was aware of Colter & Peterson. We considered a very nice 10-year-old POLAR cutter, but the Prism offered the best value and cost of ownership for the same price.”

“The Baum cutters were good and reliable for a long time, but we are not comparing apples and oranges here,” added Gregg Gabbana, Avanzado’s VP of Finance and Operations, who was tasked with finding the replacement unit. “The Prism delivers a much cleaner cut and is more efficient. It can handle bigger lifts of paper, the blade changes are faster and it has a safer process for our operators.”

Having the ability to handle larger amounts of paper with the Prism is a game changer for Gabbana’s three-man cutting crew. Gabbana said being more productive has boosted efficiency 30 to 50 percent.

“We can cut almost double the amount of paper than we did before. With the iGen digital presses printing at 26”, we can put through larger sheets and do 4-1/4” postcards going 12-up, or go jumbo size 6” x 11” and print four per sheet,” revealed Gabbana.

“The clamp pressure is a huge improvement; at 7,500 lbs. it’s triple what the Baum machines produced and holds the paper in place for a clean, reliable and square cut. The back gauge program sequences make it a faster and better machine.”

The compact Prism is loaded with state-of-the-art electronics technology, and those sequences are courtesy of the automated Microcut® computer control system. Gabbana acknowledges the trimmer quickly earned favorable comments from his operators.

“Microcut makes it a very user-friendly machine and easy to program. It saves our operators time and makes them more productive since they can store cutting sequences. The back gauge automatically aligns itself for an accurate cut every time,” Gabbana said.


“The installation went well and it was pretty much plug-and-play operational in a half-day. The machine is very user intuitive and our operators didn’t need much training. They are very happy with it and their level of job satisfaction has improved. They realize it is a great product to work with and appreciate the management team for giving them the tools to do their job.”

“The Prism delivers a much cleaner cut and is more efficient. It can handle bigger lifts of paper, the blade changes are faster and it has a safer process for our operators.”

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