ABiz: In Print and Online Acadiana’s top source for business coverage has a few changes up its sleeve as well.

by Leslie Turk

Photo by Robin May

Throughout the pages of this issue you’ll read about how the changing habits of readers and advertisers have led IND Media to rethink its business model. One of the clearest indicators of those changes was the responses to our fall 2016 reader survey, in which you told us in no uncertain terms that you want more in-depth business coverage (I’ll call it investigative business reporting) and more profiles of the business leaders driving the success of our economy.

ABiz, which publishes in print mid-month and online as ABuzz every Tuesday afternoon (with lots of other biz news published online throughout the week), will continue to bring readers the kind of engaging stories no other media outlet is covering — and you’ll get your profiles, too, a deeper dive into the lives of the most innovative people shaking up how business is conducted in our region.

Because the tech sector has become a driving force in our economy, we are introducing monthly tech columns and features, coverage that will be led by Mike Stagg.

Stagg has participated in the digital transformation of print production, news, information and health care industries. He’s advocated for tech-friendly policies at the local, state and regional levels and helped medical providers implement electronic medical records into their operations. He was a member of the LUS Citizens Advisory Committee that helped the local utility devise a strategy for commercializing the capacity of its fiber loops network. With the late John St. Julien, he co-founded Lafayette Coming Together, which led the grassroots citizen effort in support of the LUS Fiber to the Home project in 2005.

“I agree with the author Kevin Kelly who, in his book What Technology Wants, asserts that technology is just a tool and the most successful technologies are those that enable us to build on our essential social nature,” Stagg says. “In this age of information glut, we seem to have a knowledge deficiency. What I’ve been able to do over the years is help people manage change by explaining processes to them. That’s what I hope to bring to readers.”

When ABiz (originally Acadiana Business) was founded more than a decade ago, a good bit of our coverage was based on feedback we received from roundtable discussions with members of the business community. This year those roundtables will return, helping to shape our coverage over the next year as Acadiana battles back from the current economic downturn.

No one else goes in-depth on banking (each April). No one else presents the State of the Economy luncheon (June). No one else publishes a list of the Top 50 Private Companies in the region (July). No one else honors the accomplishments of women in business (September). And no one else has an Entrepreneur of the Year Symposium (December). That’s ABiz.

It’s who we have always been, but now we’re ready to bring you so much more.