Morningstar of Chicago and Bloomberg LP of New York are teaming up to provide news and sell mutual fund reports on the Bloomberg.com website.
The partnership marks the first time Bloomberg has allowed anything to be sold through its news website, according to Chris Taylor, a Bloomberg spokesperson. As of May 3, Morningstar began providing the Bloomberg site's mutual fund news section with Morningstar news and feature stories. In exchange, Morningstar is allowed to sell its one page OnDemand Fund Reports within the news section.
The integration of the Morningstar news and other stories into the Bloomberg site is being done with a link from the Bloomberg site to the Morningstar server. When a person buys a Morningstar report, they will actually be buying it off the Morningstar site. Morningstar is using a product called QPass, an electronic payment system that puts one's credit card number on file, allowing him to buy products over the web in a secure environment without having to re-enter his credit card number for every purchase.
QPass was founded in 1997 and is located in Seattle, Wa. Its other clients include The Wall Street Journal.
The OnDemand Fund Reports are electronic. When a person buys the reports, he must download them and view them from the website using Adobe Acrobat reader and either save them on a floppy disk or print them out on paper. The reports cost $3 each.
As a test for the partnership, Morningstar has been using QPass since March to allow people to buy its electronic fund reports on its Morningstar.net website. The arrangement with Bloomberg should not affect any previous agreements that Morningstar has made with other companies such as Charles Schwab and Fidelity, to whom Morningstar has sold its reports wholesale, according to a Morningstar spokesperson. And, the partnership does not preclude Morningstar making similar arrangements with other news organizations.