One statistic Lafayette Utilities System's Director Terry Huval has been reluctant to release since the launch of LUS Fiber in 2009 has been the number of its customers. That changed Tuesday.
Following the recent announcement that between 2011 and 2012 LUS Fiber had become “cash flow positive” by about $1.5 million, Huval, in a press conference this afternoon, said he was ready to release that “commercially sensitive” information.
“People always ask how many customers do we have, and I’ve always been very careful not to provide that information. Our position is it's commercially sensitive,” Huval told a crowd of more than 50 — many wearing bright orange LUS T-shirts emblazoned with "Congrats Lafayette" on the front — gathered in the atrium of City Hall for the press conference and celebration.
According to Huval, that number is more than 14,000, which he said accounts for about one-third of the market in the city of Lafayette — a figure he bases off the 43,250 LUS water customers.
With LUS Fiber expected to keep growing, Huval also listed several plans for the future, including the rollout of wireless services at various points throughout the city. LUS Fiber offers free wireless service at Acadiana Mall, but Huval said that will eventually be expanded, possibly starting with area parks.
City-Parish Council Chairman Brandon Shelvin commended LUS Fiber for its success, adding "If LUS Fiber fails, we all fail as a city."