• Kyodo

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Hankyu Holdings Inc. President Kazuo Sumi is expected to become president of Hankyu Hanshin Holdings, a company to be created in October as a result of the merger between Hankyu and Hanshin Electric Railway Co., according to sources.

In addition to Sumi, 57, Hanshin President Shinya Sakai, 58, and Hankyu Representative Director Tsunenori Kawashima, 54, are expected to have the rights to legally represent the new company, the sources said.

The appointments will be formalized at a Hankyu board meeting Sept. 29, they said.

The integration between the two railway operators in Osaka and its vicinity will represent the first merger among major private-sector railway firms since the end of World War II.

The merged firm will be Japan’s third-largest railway operator in terms of sales.

On Oct. 1, Hankyu will make Hanshin a wholly owned subsidiary through stock swaps and change the name to Hankyu Hanshin Holdings.

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