Listed funder targets shutdown by end of 2018

Brennan: Reducing and eliminating costs

Litigation funder Juridica is on course to wind up at the end of this year, with just seven investments still live, although it has had to write off a $2m stake in a patent business.

The AIM-listed company, which is chaired by Lord Brennan QC, began winding down in November 2015 citing a lack of scale.

Its 2017 annual results, published last week, showed that during the year it received $181,000 from the conclusion of one case, which was “far below our expectation when the company made its investment in 2009”.

Juridica received a further $893,000 upon exercise of a counterparty’s option to buy out its interest in another case – meaning it has received total proceeds of $2.6m on its $1.3m investment – and $12.9m in reserves from a large antitrust investment.

A total of seven investments remain active – three litigation related, with a total net asset value of $6.1m, and four relating to special purpose vehicles holding patents worth $2.2m.

The board announced an interim dividend of 4p per share, taking the total dividend paid since inception to 115.6p.

Back in 2014, Juridica bought a 7.8% preferred ownership in ipCreate for $2m; the expectation was to monetise this investment as part of future capital raising by ipCreate.

However, last year ipCreate went into liquidation, which did not result in sufficient funds to pay any equity holders after debt holders. As a result, Juridica has written off this investment.

Lord Brennan said: “While the company cannot control the timing of the litigation outcomes, the board and [investment] manager continue to take significant measures in reducing and eliminating costs while managing the run-off in an optimal fashion.”

Brickell Key Asset Management Limited will now continue to manage the remaining investments for a fee of $125,000 per quarter.

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