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Mercari hits record startup valuation in Tokyo debut

Online flea market operator's IPO pushes market cap to $6.5bn

Mercari's co-founder and CEO Shintaro Yamada, second from left, and other company executives celebrate the company's stock market debut at the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Tuesday. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO -- Shares in online flea market operator Mercari soared in the company's debut on Tuesday, shrugging off a broader decline in Japanese stocks and underscoring strong demand for one of the country's hottest unicorns.

The Tokyo-based company's stock opened at 5,000 yen, 67% higher than the offering price of 3,000 yen, before climbing further and closing the day at 5,300 yen.

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