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Friday, February 11, 2011

Visa to purchase PlaySpan

Visa Inc. announced an agreement to acquire online game monetization platform provider PlaySpan Inc. According to Visa, the card brand will pay $190 million in cash for the privately held company, with potential future earnouts if certain performance milestones are reached. The acquisition is expected to close in Visa's 2011 fiscal second quarter.

Visa said the PlaySpan acquisition complements its 2010 purchase of CyberSource Corp. Both purchases reportedly extend Visa's reach into the e-commerce marketplace, which Visa estimated as a $948 billion global market in 2010.

Among the fastest growing segments of e-commerce are the digital and mobile commerce realms, Visa noted. PlaySpan allows consumers to make online purchases of game credits for massively multiplayer role playing games, premium memberships and digital goods, Visa added. The world's largest card brand also noted that PlaySpan is a leader in the digital goods segment, which generated an estimated $25 billion in consumer spending globally in 2010, a figure expected to reach $280 billion by 2014.

PlaySpan's subsidiary PayByCash offers the Ultimate Game Card, a one-time use prepaid card that allows online gamers to purchase in-world game time or to enhance their abilities and experiences within virtual worlds. The Ultimate Game Card can be used at over 200 online gaming websites. end of article

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