Vivian Isaak

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Location: Philadelphia, PA
Founded: 1992
Industry: Professional services

Vivian Isaak

Magnum Group, Inc.

Magnum Group, Inc. provides translation and localization of training and marketing materials, websites and compliance documents, as well as multilingual desktop publishing and foreign-language voiceover services. The company was founded in 1992, “when the internet was taking baby steps,” says president Vivian Isaak. “The concept of having teams of language specialists in different parts of the world who could work together on the same project was innovative. We did this without collaborative tools, high-speed internet connectivity or online workspace.”

Fun Fact: In 2008, The National Association of Professional and Executive Women named Isaak Woman of the Year in the Translation Services category.

Isaak grew up in Argentina, with a dream of living in the U.S. “I never imagined that my passion for languages would drive me to establish a company, become WBENC-certified, and inspire me to create an environment for others to fulfill their dreams,” she says. In August 1993, less than a year after founding the company, Isaak relocated from New York to Philadelphia to pursue a business opportunity. She set up an office at home and hired a part-time assistant. The business was self-sufficient until 1996, when a small-business loan of $25,000 helped Magnum Group finance equipment and software. Today, from its Philadelphia headquarters, the company taps into a global network of more than 2,500 translators, language specialists and subject-matter experts.

Magnum supports the local community by offering pro-bono or reduced-fee translation services, in particular to hospitals, city and state agencies. In October 2008, Magnum Group helped raise public awareness among 860 WWDB listeners by sponsoring a child safety message to support the Missing Children campaign.