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Walmart Canada ramps up Visa feud


Walmart Canada has begun following through with a June announcement it would gradually stop accepting Visa payments.

On June 11, the retailer issued a release stating it would stop accepting Visa payments across Canada, starting July 18 at stores in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Multiple media reports indicate that as of July 18, Walmart Canada is no longer taking payments via Visa-branded cards at three stores in Thunder Bay.

“Unfortunately, Visa and Walmart have been unable to agree on an acceptable fee for Visa transactions,” Walmart said in its June statement. “As a result, we will no longer accept Visa in our stores across Canada, starting with our stores in Thunder Bay, on July 18, 2016. This change will then be rolled out in phases across the country. To keep prices low we continuously assess opportunities to lower our operating expenses. Walmart Canada pays over $100 million in fees to accept credit cards each and every year. Lowering costs such as these is necessary for us to be able to keep our prices low and continue saving our customers money.”

In response, Visa has taken advertisements in several Canadian newspapers accusing Walmart of using customers as pawns in its disagreement. Both companies have publicly said they remain committed to negotiating a solution.

Other forms if payment, including cash, Interac debit, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express, are not affected. Walmart Canada operates more than 370 stores. The company has not publicly issued a timeline for when other stores might stop accepting Visa payment.

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