Toys "R" Us
Consumers leave a Toys "R" Us store with full shopping carts after shopping on the day dubbed "Black Friday" in Framingham, Massachusetts, Nov. 25, 2011. Adam Hunger/REUTERS

Toys “R” Us announced in September it filed for bankruptcy in the face of declines in revenue, given the price competition from online retailers and its inability to service debt. While the company’s North American business is in the doldrums, it seems to be doing quite well in Asia, where a report Tuesday claimed it was considering a $2 billion initial public offering (IPO).

The Asian subsidiary, Toys “R” Us Asia, was set up in 1986, and the parent company holds about 85 percent stake in it, the rest owned by the Fung Group, a holding company owned privately by Hong Kong businessmen brothers, Victor and William Fung. The report by Bloomberg, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter, said both companies were in discussions “with investment banks to study the feasibility of listing the Asian business on the Hong Kong bourse.” A successful listing could value the subsidiary at about $2 billion.

The bankruptcy filing in September included some North American subsidies of the company, but not the Asian business. However, it could still complicate matters for an IPO, with investors likely being more jittery about putting money in a company whose parent is under bankruptcy protection. The company’s current owners, however, stand to win back at least some of their losses in the event of a successful IPO.

There has been increasing focus on the Asia-Pacific market by the company, where it is seeing growth enough to help offset poor sales in the United States and Europe. It recently merged its Japan business with the one that operated stores in China and Southeast Asia. Earlier in October, Toys “R” Us also opened its first store in India — in Bangalore — which is seeing about 15-20 percent annual growth in the toys retail sector. In the next 6 months, the company plans to open two more stores in the country.

Meanwhile, Toys “R” Us continues to face problems in other parts of the world, such as in the United Kingdom, where its suppliers have stopped shipments to the company over fears of losses, stemming from the parent company’s bankruptcy filing. Even though the company said at the time of the filing that its U.K. business would run as usual, the Sunday Telegraph reported two suppliers — Worlds Apart and Tutti Bambini — had stopped deliveries to the company. Toys “R” Us also confirmed the report, calling the two vendors “part of a small number of suppliers” who had taken such an action.

Toys “R” Us is owned by KKR, Bain Capital and Vornado Realty Trust, which acquired the company in 2005 for $7.5 billion. KKR and Vornado value the company at nothing, having written down their investment to zero.