Asda is understood to be considering a bid for struggling toy retailer Early Learning Centre as it looks to fill excess space in its stores.

Asda is one of a number of interested parties looking at the Mothercare-owned business, according to The Daily Express.

The move comes as supermarkets strive to fill space in their big box stores. Tesco last year acquired family friendly restaurant Giraffe and the Harris+Hoole coffee chain which it has brought into its new model Extra store in Watford.

Last year Walmart-owned Asda revealed plans with Barclays to try out small in-store bank branches at some of its supermarkets. It is understood that Early Learning Centre would be also be brought into some of its larger stores.

Last month it emerged that Tesco had looked at buying Early Learning Centre parent Mothercare.

Early Learning Centre, which has 40 UK stores, was bought by Mothercare for £85m in 2007 but it is understood the embattled baby and children retailer is looking to sell it at a knock-down price.

Mothercare issued a profit warning after a promotional Christmas which led to a slump in its share price.