Morningstar Inc was incorporated in Illinois on May 16, 1984. The Company is a provider of investment research in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. It offers products and services for financial advisors, asset managers, retirement plan providers and sponsors, and individual investors. It also offers products designed for investors in Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe, Latin America, and South Africa. The Company serves approximately 260,000 financial advisors, 1,500 asset management firms, 26 retirement plan providers, 237,000 retirement plan sponsors, and 9.3 million individual investors. It has operations in 27 countries. The Company has two product groups, investment information and investment management. The investment information product group includes all of the data, software, and research products and services. These products are sold through subscriptions or license agreements. The investment management product group includes the asset management operations, which earn the majority of their revenue from asset-based fees. The Investment Management products include its asset management operations, which operate as registered investment advisors and earn more than half of their revenue from asset-based fees. The Company promotes its products and services with a staff of sales and marketing professionals, as well as an in-house public relations team. Its sales team includes several strategic account managers who oversee all aspects of institutional client relationships. The Company sells its investment information products and services including Morningstar Data, Morningstar Advisor Workstation, Morningstar Direct, Morningstar Equity Research, Retirement Solutions, and some of its structured credit research and ratings offerings, through license agreements. The Company's customer groups include adviser; asset management; Retirement; and Individual investor. The Company's main competitors include Advent Software, Charles Schwab, Standard & Poor's, SunGard, Tamarac, Thomson Reuters, eVestment Alliance, FactSet Research Systems, Advisor Software, Inc., Financial Express, Interactive Data Corporation, Markit on Demand, Assetmark, Brinker Capital, Curian Capital, Envestnet PMC, Loring Ward, and SEI Investments. 'Morningstar' and the Morningstar logo are registered marks of Morningstar in the United States and in certain other jurisdictions. Investment advisory and broker-dealer businesses are subject to regulation in the United States at both the federal and state level, as well as by self-regulatory organizations.