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DownStream Digital continues growth

DownStream Digital, a Portland-based corporate and retail communications firm and postproduction house, has just renewed a multiyear lease on its 1650 N.W. Naito Parkway location and added some additional space.

The firm's growth counters rumors that it was going to close its doors. Nor is another rumor true, that it would lose the Nike Inc. account, according to Tim Canfield, a managing partner at DownStream.

'We definitely don't want anybody out there to think that we're closing down or losing clients or anything like that, because there is no merit to that whatsoever,' he said.

The company, in business since 1988, also has been hiring new employees, among them a new editor just last month. DownStream currently employs about 50 people, including Colleen Finn, who was brought on as director of trends and culture last fall in part to help drum up new clients.

As for the Nike account, Canfield said DownStream has another contract with the sneaker giant to create and maintain a digital media network that accompanies Nike's retail displays in roughly 170 stores. He said DownStream is adding 23 more stores to the network this month, and there are 'a lot more in the hopper.'

Scott Reams, senior manager of communications for Nike, said the company doesn't comment on vendor contracts.

May searches for new chief executive

The sudden resignation last week of May Department Stores Co. Chief Executive Officer Gene Kahn caused stock for Meier & Frank Co.'s corporate parent to soar.

The departure of Kahn, widely criticized for paying too much when May bought the Marshall Field's chain last summer, also fostered a round of speculation about May's future.

Banc of America Securities, for example, raised its rating for May, saying a new CEO could turn around the St. Louis-based department store chain.

Analysts raised the idea that May could be a takeover target for its biggest rival, Federated Department Stores of Cincinnati.