General Electric (GE.N) said on Tuesday it would split into three public companies as the storied U.S. industrial conglomerate seeks to simplify its business, pare down debt and breathe life into a battered share price.

The split marks the end of the 129-year-old conglomerate that was once the most valuable U.S. corporation and a global symbol of American business power.

GE shares were up about 4% in afternoon trade,after reaching a nearly 3-1/2 year high, compared with a 0.5% drop in broader S&P 500 (.SPX) index. The industrial conglomerate’s shares have gained about 9% since July 30 when it completed a 1-for-8 reverse split.

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