The launching of Deakin Australia in 1993, a pivotal moment in the company’s history, was followed by a period of intense growth. An increasing range of training and education solutions was offered and an expanded client list was secured through its two major divisions: the Professional Associations Division and the Corporate and Government Division.
Over the next several years, Deakin Australia expanded into interstate markets with the opening of Sydney and Canberra offices. Its corporate training and education activities were increasingly being recognised, and the organisation won praise in the Industry Taskforce Report on Leadership and Management in Australia (Karpin Report 1995) ‘as one of four providers in this country able to provide management training of an international standard’.
Deakin Australia’s credentials were further highlighted in 1996 when it played an integral part in Deakin University being awarded the 1995–96 Australian University of the Year for ‘Outstanding Technology in Education’. Deakin again won the award in 1999–2000 and was at that time the only university in the history of the award to have won it twice. The judges of the award commented that, ‘Deakin is Australia’s biggest, best and most innovative provider of corporate education and training’.
In 1997, Deakin Australia formed ‘DeakinLink’, an alliance with the ACTU to provide education and training to Victorian unions. Another significant milestone for Deakin Australia around this time was a joint venture with APESMA to launch the MBA (Technology Management) program in India with core units tailored to the Indian market/environment.
In 1999, Deakin Australia established, through its long-term relationship with the Coles organisation, the Coles Institute (launched by David Kemp, Federal Minister for Education), Australia’s first corporate university to provide workplace-based education and training for some 55,000 employees of Coles Supermarkets throughout Australia. In the years following, the alliance with Coles went from strength to strength, culminating in several awards such as the International Coach Federation Award in 2003, the Business and Higher Education Round Table Award for Educational Partnerships in 2004 and the Corporate University Xchange Alliance Award in 2005 and again in 2007.
In 2000, Deakin Australia was relaunched as DeakinPrime in recognition of the increasing global market for corporate training and education. Offices were opened in the United States and India, and a growing number of international clients were targeted.
Throughout the following decade, Deakin Australia continued to grow its client base, including significant alliances with Shell (1998), Siemens Australia (1999), the Stockbrokers Association of Australia (2001, 2008), the City of Melbourne and CSL (2002), Ford and ANZ (2003), the Defence Materiel Organisation (2005), Tennis Australia (2006), WorkSafe Victoria (2006), and Cadburys (2008), to name a few, and it secured contract extensions to continue providing education services to CPA Australia and the Financial Planners Association.