Winners / Selection Rationale

2017 17th Porter Prize Winner


KATITAS CO. , LTD (hereafter, Katitas) purchases, remodels and resells second-hand residential housing in rural communities throughout Japan. Katitas resells the houses at a low price?the monthly mortgage payment for a Katitas home is comparable to the amount paid as rent for an apartment in the same geographic area. The company grows its business by providing good-quality, freshly renovated pre-owned homes in areas where there is a limited supply of newly built homes.

Net Protections, Inc.

Net Protections is a pioneer and the leading provider of a deferred payment service. The company’s deferred payment service allows manufacturers to outsource the deferred payment service option offered to customers making purchases via their online sales channel. Net Protections’ deferred payment service also helps small online sellers increase their sales. Net Protections reduces its own risk of delinquent accounts (or more precisely, the risk of shoppers not paying their invoices) by providing small loans to a vast numbers of shoppers.

Pro-Ship Incorporated

Pro-Ship has created the packaged software market for fixed assets management, and has sustained its leadership position by targeting large companies that manage complex fixed assets. By undertaking in-house all aspects of the operations (everything from product development to introduction and maintenance services), Pro-Ship achieves superior usability for customers as it pursues business operations centered on packaged software.

QB Net Holdings Co., Ltd.

QB Net Holdings offers a 10-minute haircut service for 1,000 yen (US$9) at its chain of small barbershops (“QB HOUSE shops”) in areas with high foot traffic. The unparalleled convenience of the company’s services has generated a new pattern of consumer behavior?a quick stop for a haircut during the lunch break or on the way home. Despite competition from followers imitating QB HOUSE’s value proposition, the company has achieved a sustained competitive advantage by increasing inimitability through the internalization of various activities, including the training of stylists and improvement of the fit among activities. QB Net’s barbershops in overseas markets are showing growth and contributing to profit.