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Banana Republic tests women's accessory chain-WWD

NEW YORK, May 18 (Reuters) - Gap Inc's GPS.N Banana Republic chain is testing a spin-off store specializing in affordable women's accessories, trade magazine Women's Wear Daily reported on Monday.

A prototype of the new store, called Edition by Banana Republic, opened on Friday in San Francisco, the paper said, adding that 80 percent of the store’s merchandise costs less than $100.

Gap officials could not immediately be reached.

The move from Gap, which also runs the lower-priced Old Navy chain in addition to its namesake stores, comes at a time when some other retailers are looking to trim their portfolio of brands.

Abercrombie & Fitch Co ANF.N said last week it would conduct a strategic review of its Ruehl chain, which caters to twentysomethings, in a sign that it may shed the stores, which have underperformed for months. Last year, women's apparel chain AnnTaylor Stores Corp ANN.N shelved plans to launch a new store concept targeting baby boomers. (Reporting by Martinne Geller, editing by Maureen Bavdek)

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