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Amazon tries on new apparel store

The online retailer gets ready for the holidays with a range of merchandise from places such as Gap, Eddie Bauer, Foot Locker and Nordstrom.

Margaret Kane Former Staff writer, CNET News
Margaret is a former news editor for CNET News, based in the Boston bureau.
Margaret Kane
2 min read
Amazon.com is getting ready to launch an apparel site that features dozens of brands through partnerships with retailers including Gap, Eddie Bauer, Foot Locker and Nordstrom.

The e-tailing giant has been rumored to be working on the site for months. The new apparel store, code-named Project Ruby, is being tested this week.

"Our goal is to provide complete apparel selection and offer it the Amazon way--with easy navigation, a single shopping cart, your ordering and payment information already on file, etc. Of course, none of this would be possible without our many apparel store partners," CEO Jeff Bezos said in a letter to customers.

Amazon has already hooked up with offline retailers, including Target and Circuit City. But the apparel store represents a big step forward in the company's plans. The test site mentions stores and brands including Gap, Old Navy, Eddie Bauer, Lands' End, Foot Locker, Guess, eLuxury, OshKosh and Nordstrom, and says that Pea in the Pod and Urban Outfitters, among others, will be added soon.

"With the announcement of Apparel, potentially the largest online retail vertical (excluding travel), Amazon is furthering its Online Mall concept, bringing its users the largest selection of merchandise, all from a single outlet," wrote U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray analyst Safa Rashtchy in a research note.

However, it is unclear what the financial impact of the new store will be. Amazon's deals with retailers vary, and Rashtchy guessed that the new store would have Amazon acting in a transaction capacity only.

An Amazon representative could not immediately be reached for further comment.