danal.jpgDanal, a company that wants to let young people use cellphones to make payments without owning a credit card, is about to launch in the U.S. with a separate subsidiary, according to the WSJ.

It lets you buy downloadable music or other digital goods — and charge it to your mobile-phone bills using an authentication code.

Danal is the latest in a zoo of such companies, however, and it isn’t clear what makes the company unique. As the WSJ piece points out, San Jose, Calif.’s PaymentOne also allows people to bill online items to their mobile bills. Start-up Obopay, of Redwood City, Calif., lets people pay each other via mobile phone, and lets you use a debit card for this — and may also eventually allow people to bill items to phone bills. There are all sorts of other payment flavors popping up, including Payoneer, aimed at online payments (see our coverage), and Vivotech (see coverage).

The subsidiary, based in San Jose, Calif., has raised $6 million in backing from Silicon Valley firm Morgenthaler Ventures. The Korean parent has invested $3.5 million more.

Merchants will have to agree to participate. As with credit card payments, they’ll have to up a small percentage of every online sale to let their customers use Danal’s service.

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