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Yahoo, Visa expand payment deal globally

The credit card giant will become the default payment option for international versions of Yahoo Shopping, Yahoo Travel and Yahoo Wallet.

Visa will be the default credit card for e-commerce shoppers paying with plastic on many international Yahoo sites.

Under an agreement finalized Tuesday between Visa International and the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Internet portal, Visa will become the default payment option for international versions of Yahoo Shopping, Yahoo Travel and Yahoo Wallet. Yahoo will also offer Visa when it has promotions that include credit cards or debit cards.

The international deal is similar to one made last year between Yahoo and Foster City, Calif.-based Visa USA. The new agreement will link Yahoo and Visa in Asia, Canada, Latin America, Central Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

As part of the agreement, Visa will develop and execute co-branded marketing campaigns for Yahoo, including TV ads and newspaper ads, outdoor posters and airport signs. Visa International will also feature special deals available only on Yahoo at the promotions portion of its site and in Visa's "World's Best Offers Program" catalog.

The deal promotes a trend that Yahoo marketing executives are calling "u-commerce," or universal commerce--products and services that consumers worldwide can purchase at any time and from any electronic device such as a laptop, cell phone or handheld computer.

"By further expanding our global relationships, Yahoo continues to build the Internet's leading consumer and business services company by delivering programs, content and services that meet the needs of our broad audience," said Jasmine Kim, vice president of international marketing at Yahoo.

It is unclear whether the deal will give Yahoo an immediate e-commerce boost. Although Visa cards generate more than $1.8 trillion in annual volume and are accepted at more than 22 million locations around the world, e-commerce experts say many international Web users are loathe to purchase goods online, largely because credit cards have not penetrated their cultures as they have in the United States.

"They don't use credit cards like we do in the United States," said Steve Adams, CEO of Uniscape, a Sunnyvale, Calif.-based software maker that has helped 140 companies build and operate Web sites for foreign customers.

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