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Business trends

Foreign activist funds set their sights on Japan's smaller companies

Kyushu Railway told to boost returns from 'high-quality' properties

A Kyushu Railway bullet train in Kumamoto Prefecture, western Japan (Photo by Kosaku Mimura)

TOKYO -- Activist investors are piling into Japan, and they are starting to look beyond global names like Sony and Olympus to local companies as the push for better corporate governance gathers steam.

Fir Tree Partners of the U.S. recently disclosed that it holds a 5.1% stake in Kyushu Railway, a rail operator based on the western Japanese island of Kyushu.

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