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Wednesday, August 13, 2003 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Business Digest

Seattle FilmWorks stores to close

SEATTLE — Online photography company PhotoWorks will close its remaining eight retail stores, the company said yesterday in a regulatory filing.

The stores, which are run under the company's former name, Seattle FilmWorks, will shut down by the end of September. Stores to close include four in Seattle — Northgate, West Seattle, the University District and downtown Seattle — as well as in Bellevue, Renton, Tacoma and Olympia.

PhotoWorks ran 35 retail stores as recently as 2001, but over the past several years the company has refocused itself around digital and mail-order photo services.

The company said last month that its top executive, Gary Christophersen, is stepping down as chief executive but will stay on as chairman.

Rainier storage building to be torn down

SEATTLE — The former Rainier Cold Storage building, the hulking white landmark on East Marginal Way, will be torn down to make way for a new $30 million chilled warehouse.

The Port of Seattle commission yesterday approved a 30-year lease with Seattle Cold Storage (SCS), which will build the 200,000- to 300,000-square-foot building. Under the deal, the port agreed to pay for the demolition of the Rainier building, which was closed two years ago due to earthquake damage.

SCS plans to move its headquarters from Algona to the new building.

Union filing lawsuit against Port of Seattle

SEATTLE — The union representing some former warehouse workers is expected to fire another shot at the Port of Seattle today in the ongoing legal dispute over the Port's decision to shut down warehouse operations last year.

Members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Local 9, will file a class-action lawsuit against the Port demanding it reinstate medical coverage for 50 retired warehouse workers and provide the same benefits to 150 former workers eligible for coverage when they reach retirement age.

The union is also suing the Port over its decision to sell two former warehouses and 26 acres of Terminal 105 East to Charlie's Produce for $19.5 million. The union wants to block the sale until at least October, when the state's Public Employment Relations Commission is scheduled to hold a hearing on nine unfair-labor-practice complaints the union filed against the Port over the closures.

Seattle Genetics has positive test results

SEATTLE — Seattle Genetics said yesterday that one of its experimental drugs was able to prolong lives of patients with lung cancer, based on a preliminary analysis from a midstage clinical trial.

The trial, still going on, shows that non-small-cell lung cancer patients on Seattle Genetics' antibody SGN-15 and Taxotere, a common form of chemotherapy, had a median survival time of 11.4 months compared with 5.1 months for patients on Taxotere alone.

Seattle Genetics said it expects to complete the final analysis of the trial, including quality-of-life measurements, in early 2004.

AT&T Wireless writing down investment

PRINCETON, N.J. — AT&T Wireless Services will have $62 million in pretax costs this quarter because the value of its stake in a Taiwanese carrier has declined.

A cost for early debt retirement will reduce third-quarter profit by an additional $39 million, Redmond-based AT&T Wireless said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Monday.

AT&T Wireless is writing down its investment in Far EasTone Telecommunications, Taiwan's No. 3 mobile-phone operator. Far EasTone's shares have plunged 40 percent from a 2001 high amid fierce competition. AT&T Wireless had a 23 percent stake in the Taipei-based company at the end of last year, according to SEC filings.

Compiled from Seattle Times business staff and Bloomberg News.

Copyright © 2003 The Seattle Times Company

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