Juridica makes $22m dividend payout as proceeds of litigation roll in

Brennan: significant activity in next 18 months
Photo: Steve Nimmons

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AIM-listed litigation funder Juridica has grossed $85m (£52m) from its investments in the four and a half years since it launched, its half-year report has shown. Nobis

The figure has been boosted by the $35m profit it reported last month that has been made in partial settlements on four antitrust cases, and chairman Lord Dan Brennan QC said they have “reasonable grounds for anticipating further substantial returns from these cases”.

The seven investments that have reached completion since inception (ie, excluding the four recent partial settlements) have delivered a gross internal rate of return of 85%.

Juridica currently has $157m committed in 18 investments, representing 23 different cases. They are split between antitrust and competition matters (six cases with $97m committed), patent litigation (10 cases with $37m committed) and commercial disputes (seven cases with $23m committed).

In the first six months of 2012, the company received proceeds of just $800,000 from one partial settlement, and recorded a total comprehensive loss of $1.6m – including fund operating expenses of $3.7m.

Juridica made three supplemental investments worth $2.3m in existing cases “to increase the likelihood of greater potential return”. It was able to announce a $22m dividend payout, meaning that in all shareholders will have received $48m from the company since it floated.

Lord Brennan said: “We expect significant activity in the next 18 months. This belief is based on [the fund manager’s] review of presently scheduled trial dates, expected final decisions following trial or arbitration, and appeals.”

As well as the recent settlements, the report revealed that in July one of the antitrust cases was dismissed in favour of the defendant and is now on appeal. Though this “may well be successful”, it means a delay of 12-18 months in resolving the case.

One of Juridica’s patent cases recently won at trial, but the likely recovery of $8m is set against an investment of $8.3m. In another, the jury returned a verdict of $500,000 against an investment of $2m. Another patent case, however, is looking far stronger after a $50m verdict, from a $5m investment.