“Solving business problems is what I do best!”Meet SCORE NYC mentor Ivan Szanto


  • Thirty-three years of experience in import and export
  • Specialist in product development, purchasing, trade, finance, and operations
  • Expert in manufacturing processes, trademarks, and contracts
  • Workshop presenter at Baruch College, Lehmann College, and SCORE

Ivan’s experience at SCORE dates back to 1993, when he retired from a business career that spanned forty-eight years and two continents. He modestly estimates that  since he joined SCORE, he has probably mentored several thousand people. “The most important thing I can do is be a good listener,” he explains enthusiastically. “Many of my clients are focused on the wrong problems, and it is my role to help them see things from a different perspective.”

A graduate of the University of Budapest and the Dairy College in Magyarovar, Hungary, Ivan managed a large dairy business owned by his family until it was confiscated by the Soviets in 1949. After working in a government-owned food retail organization for seven years, he escaped to America with his wife and child during the Hungarian Uprising of 1956. “There was only a small window of time for us to leave,” he reminisces, “so we packed our bags and grasped the opportunity to start a new life.”

Once in the United States, Ivan, fluent in English, Hungarian, German, and French, worked in quality control for Borden, studied business at Columbia University, and became general manager and partner at a small import company. By 1972, his career soared as he became executive VP and COO of GCI/Edge, a large importer and wholesale distributor of hunting and camping equipment.

Happily married for sixty-eight years, Ivan and his wife, Marianne, have one child and two grandchildren. “Work has always been my hobby,” he admits.

About the Author(s)


SCORE NYC is a volunteer team of experienced business mentors dedicated to providing insights and knowledge to small business owners and those wishing to start a business with. Our 70+ mentors represent a multitude of industries and business expertise. They have all enjoyed success in their careers and are committed to giving you the support, encouragement and tools needed to build and sustain...


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