How $5 a Night Hostels Led to Japan's First $1 Billion Startup

  • Founder Yamada plans to expand flea-market app in the U.S.
  • Japan hasn't produced as many major startups as China, India

Shintaro Yamada, chief executive officer of Mercari Inc.

Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

In 2012, Shintaro Yamada was 34 years old, single and frustrated with his job. So he quit a comfortable position in Tokyo and set out to see the world.

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