War affects Sabre here and abroad

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Thursday, June 1, 2006

Clifford Franklin, president of commercial integrator Sabre Security, has a unique perspective on the War in Iraq and the War on Terror in general. With offices in New York City and London, his company operates at the twin epicenters of the war effort--and efforts by terrorists to disrupt the worldwide economy.
"I think everyone's accepted that something's going to happen again," Franklin said, "everyone's just waiting, and I think New York and London are fairly similar: We're not going to change our lives too much, we're going to get on with it, and we're not going to kowtow to terrorism."
Still, that attitude hasn't translated into increased business for Sabre. "From our perspective, I think the war has actually caused a mini recession," Franklin said, "both in London and New York. It's become very difficult to part people from their money, with the uncertainty that's going on." He attributes that uncertainty to both the war itself and the troubles that war has brought to the administrations currently leading both countries.
"Definitely on the commercial side of things, we've seen a downturn in work and that's what's causing it," he said. Sabre also does work for the Federal Reserve of New York, a quasi-governmental entity, where he has seen security budgets increase, though not drastically.
One effect the war has had, he said, is to get the United States moving toward catching up with the United Kingdom, especially in regard to video surveillance. "The more the government embraces technology, like biometrics and CCTV, the more it becomes more accepted in the commercial world, and with the general public," he said.