This excerpt taken from the V 10-K filed Nov 21, 2008.
Our Reorganization and Initial Public Offering
Visa Inc. was incorporated as a Delaware stock corporation in May 2007. In October 2007, we undertook a reorganization of the global Visa enterprise. Prior to our reorganization, Visa operated as five corporate entities related by ownership and membership: Visa U.S.A., Visa International (comprising the operating regions of Asia Pacific (AP), Latin America and Caribbean (LAC), and Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEMEA)), Visa Canada, Visa Europe and Inovant, which operated the VisaNet transaction processing system and other related processing systems. Each of Visa U.S.A., Visa Canada, Visa Europe, Visa AP, Visa LAC and Visa CEMEA operated as a separate geographic region, serving its member financial institutions and administering Visa programs in its respective region. As a result of the reorganization, Visa U.S.A., Visa International, Visa Canada and Inovant became direct or indirect subsidiaries of Visa Inc. Visa Europe did not become a subsidiary of Visa Inc., but rather remained owned by its member financial institutions and entered into a set of contractual arrangements with Visa Inc. in connection with the reorganization.
In March 2008, we completed our initial public offering, or IPO. As a result of our offering, the financial institutions that hold our class B and class C shares represent a minority of the outstanding shareholder interest of Visa Inc. For more information about our capital structure and the voting rights of our class A, class B, and class C common stock, see Item 8Financial Statements and Supplementary Data included elsewhere in this report.