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The Man Behind Japan’s Governance Plan Is Feeling Pleased

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The architect of a revolution at Japanese companies is a happy man.

Sipping orange juice on the 45th floor of the Ritz Carlton hotel in Tokyo last week, Kunio Ito was about to celebrate another milestone, with the nation introducing governance rules for companies that other developed countries have had for years. The snappily-dressed academic headed a 53-person group that spent more than a year reviewing business and financial markets, finally producing recommendations in August 2014 that foreshadowed many sweeping changes since, including the code for listed firms that took effect this week.