Unfortunately, the latest success of the Awards was not to last long.
The program was still threatened by significant operating costs, leaving Standards Australia with a difficult decision regarding its future. Weighed down by high overheads including staff and offices in New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland and Western Australia and limited revenue streams, the 1999 program was put on hold while Standards Australia explored other options to secure the future of the ADA. For the first time in many years, no Awards were presented in Australia.
Despite this setback, support from the Industrial Design community for Standards Australia's continuing involvement in the ADA continued to grow. With no appropriate professional body that could inherit the program, Industrial Designers lobbied for Standards Australia to remain as caretaker.
Armed with a new business plan and financial model, strong support from the Industrial Design community and a passion to see the Awards continue, the Board of Standards Australia approved a plan from the Design Awards team and committed to another year for the Awards.