PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Boathouse Capital, a Philadelphia-based private equity firm, today announced that two of its training entities – MIS Training Institute (MISTI) and LeaderQuest – have combined to form one high-growth education brand: ACI Learning.
Together, the two companies have served their constituents for over 50 years — yet ACI Learning’s path forward is anything but traditional. ACI Learning offers audit, cybersecurity, and information technology (I.T.) training and certification to B2B and B2C clients across a wide range of verticals, including banking & finance, defense, oil & gas, manufacturing, and government agencies. The combined company — headquartered in Denver, Colo. — serves more than 200,000 professionals over six continents, training more than 15,000 enterprises, professionals, and career starters each year.
“While MISTI and LeaderQuest were each successful and growing as standalone businesses, we recognized the potential to reach new audiences with new learning experiences by bringing the two together under one,” said Chong Moua, partner at Boathouse Capital. “We now have an experienced leadership team, with an expanded training portfolio, supported by one best-in-class tech stack and the clarity of one brand in the marketplace.”
At the beginning of 2020, the ACI Learning executive team established a bold manifesto for the company’s future: virtual training expansion, velocity in B2B enterprise growth, IP ownership, a scalable team, and technical infrastructure. Behind all of that was an unwavering purpose: to create meaningful professional outcomes that impact lives.
“The MISTI and LeaderQuest teams moved exceedingly quickly and strategically to realize their joint potential in an evolving, outcomes-driven marketplace,” noted Brett Shively, CEO of ACI Learning. “In under six months we have not only built one fully unified entity, but we have also positioned it for growth and expanded student success.”
The company’s leadership team is a mix of veteran employees and new industry hires.
“I have grown up with LeaderQuest, working here for the past 10 years,” said Tim Kalil, COO, and President of ACI, “and despite tremendous growth, we have never lost sight of our purpose — successful student outcomes. Each month, we help hundreds of our students get placed in high-potential I.T. careers that change the trajectory of their lives, with enterprise partners turning to us for both corporate training and job candidates.”
“Doing well by doing good is an attitude that permeates our company,” said Jerry Kukuchka, CFO of ACI Learning. “The more we focus on student success outcomes, the better we perform financially. Our record revenue growth over the past six months is evidence of that.”
ACI Learning has expanded its focus on its global enterprise training practice, recognizing its rare position to train practitioners, professionals, and even presidents and C-Level executives of large organizations.
“Our unique DNA is our ability to elevate the skills across an entire organization,” noted Tom Katsahnias, chief sales officer. “From entry-level I.T. positions to the top minds in internal audit, we’re prepared to train them on ‘what’s next’ in their industry. Even now, the world’s single largest company — the U.S government — plus Big Four auditing firms and leaders in defense contracting all turn to us to meet their professional training demands.”
The ACI Learning brand name is a clear and straightforward reference to the Audit, Cybersecurity, and Information Technology professional training that the combined entity offers.
“It would have been easier to maintain one of our legacy brand names for the new company,” said Gary Van Prooyen, chief marketing officer of ACI Learning, “but our vision is so much bigger. We didn’t want to be constrained by our past way of doing business.”
Dr. David Duke, chief product officer for the new company, added: “While we were highly regarded for our high-quality, in-person learning, we’re transforming our portfolio of audit, cybersecurity, and I.T. training for both B2B enterprise and B2C professional clients. As a result, more than 90% of our training is now virtual, with even more on-demand modalities on the near horizon.”
A preview of the new company and its purpose can be found at www.acilearning.com. The company will introduce its combined training portfolio for 2021 and beyond over the next few weeks. A new commerce website is expected to launch in late Q3.
Founded in 1978, MIS Training Institute (MISTI) is the international leader in information security, audit, and I.T. audit training, with offices in Boston and London. MISTI's expertise draws on experience gained in training more than 200,000 delegates across five continents. MISTI's training courses are available in a live classroom setting in major cities throughout the world, virtual classroom options, an in-house program, or online via a live webinar or a self-study program. All MISTI training courses and conferences are led by industry experts, hands-on professionals who have been in the field, and who practice what they teach. MISTI is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors.
Established in 2006, LeaderQuest transforms aspiring I.T. practitioners into job-ready specialists through I.T. training, cybersecurity skills, and certification in technology from Microsoft, to Cisco, to Project Management (PMP), and more. LeaderQuest currently has campuses in or near Denver, Colo., Colorado Springs, Colo., Dallas, Tex., San Antonio, Tex., and Jacksonville, Fla. LeaderQuest was recently recognized by EC-Council with the 2019 North America Accredited Training Center of the Year Award.
Name: Gary Van Prooyen
Organization: ACI Learning
Address: 6855 S. Havana, Suite 420, Centennial, CO, 80112