Japan Airlines’ share offering is expected to raise $8.5 billion in the world’s second-biggest share sale this year after Facebook.
The move, which will see JAL’s shares re-listed on the Tokyo stock exchange next week, marks a dramatic turnaround for the airline, which went bankrupt in early 2010.
The carrier expects to sell 175 million shares at 3,790 yen each, resulting in proceeds of 663 billion yen ($8.5 billion).
That is nearly double the amount of public money spent to keep it afloat during a massive restructuring, with the proceeds expected to be used to pay back a government bailout.
JAL, which continued to fly while in bankruptcy, implemented massive job and route cuts as part of an overhaul.
The airline will be valued at about 687 billion yen after the sale, outpacing rival All Nippon Airways’ market capitalisation of about 633 billion yen.
Shigeo Sugawara, senior investment manager at Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Asset Management, told Dow Jones Newswires: “The domestic market is under a near-duopoly by JAL and All Nippon Airways. It’ll be a steady market unless they start excessive price cutting. Uncertainty remains, however, over international flights.”