• Kyodo

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The Tokyo Stock Exchange on Thursday approved the listing of Kyushu Railway Co. on its main section.

With an expected market capitalization of around ¥500 billion, JR Kyushu’s debut on Oct. 25 will be one of the biggest initial public offerings in Japan this year, after messaging app provider Line Corp. was valued at ¥910 billion when it listed in July.

Created by the privatization of the Japanese National Railways in 1987, JR Kyushu will also go public on the Fukuoka Stock Exchange.

Following its filing in June to list on the Tokyo bourse, JR Kyushu boosted the number of outstanding shares to 160 million from 320,000 through a stock split in August to attract a wide range of investors including individuals.

The company’s shares are now exclusively held by the Japan Railway Construction and Technology Agency, which is administered by the transport ministry. With the listing, all shares will be sold and the proceeds used for pension payments to former employees.

JR Kyushu will be the first of three JR companies outside of Honshu to be publicly listed.

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