• Kyodo


Roland Corp., a Japanese electronic musical instrument-maker, returned to the Tokyo stock market Wednesday, about six years after delisting due to structural reforms.

Roland finished its first day of trading on the first section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange at ¥2,920 ($28.20), 5.8% below its IPO price of ¥3,100. The company was valued at ¥79.8 billion at the end of the day.

Its market capitalization based on the opening price of ¥2,954 was ¥80.7 billion, making it the second most valuable company to list this year after Yukiguni Maitake Co., a firm based in Niigata Prefecture producing and selling mushrooms and other food items, which was valued at over ¥83.0 billion.

“It is a tough start but we’d like to earn trust by delivering results,” Roland CEO Junichi Miki said in a news conference when asked for his reaction to the stock opening below the IPO price.

Miki said demand for its electronic musical instruments such as keyboards and drums has grown during the coronavirus pandemic as more people spend time at home, adding that he expects the music industry to keep expanding internationally.

“Although there are many challenges amid the pandemic, I think the trend of more people enjoying creative activities at home will not change,” he said.

Roland was delisted from the first section in 2014 as its management team completed a tender offer for its shares to pursue drastic reforms.

The company, based in Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture, had been struggling from a downturn in business since the global financial crisis triggered by the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008.

After strengthening its management and cultivating markets in developing countries, the company hopes relisting will attract more talent to create innovative products. Roland has a track record of steady sales in Europe and the United States.

Its late founder, Ikutaro Kakehashi, received a Technical Grammy Award in 2013 along with Dave Smith, president of Sequential Circuits, for developing the universal MIDI format for electronic instruments. MIDI refers to Musical Instrument Digital Interface technology.

At the news conference, Miki said Roland aims to increase the number of subscribers for its cloud-based platform, where members can create music by using software synthesizers and various sampled instruments, to 100,000 next year. It now has about 13,000 Roland Cloud subscribers.

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