Trending Now

Legal Funding Journal is dedicated to informing and engaging the global legal funding community through daily news, insight, analysis and original content.

Latest News

View All

Leading European Finance Firm Nera Capital to Fund €1 Billion Truck Cartel Class Action

By Harry Moran |

A prominent European finance company has announced it will be funding over 25,000 claims in a €1 billion class action against truck manufacturers, who were part of a price-fixing cartel.

Nera Capital, which has offices in Manchester, Dublin and The Netherlands, is focussing exclusively on group redress claims, helping consumers and small to medium sized businesses, fight for justice against antitrust behaviour by corporates.

In 2016, the European Commission found MAN, Volvo/Renault, Daimler, Iveco, and DAF broke European Union antitrust rules by colluding on truck pricing and on passing on the costs of compliance with stricter emission rules from 1997 to 2011.

The Commission imposed a record €2.93 billion fine on the manufacturers, except MAN as it revealed the existence of the cartel. All companies acknowledged their involvement and agreed to settle the case.

Speaking about this historic class action, Nera Capital Director, Aisling Byrne, said this investment will ensure truck owners receive justice for the damage the 14-year cartel caused. "The agreements covered both medium-duty trucks and heavy-duty trucks and affected the entire European Economic Area. While the cartel stopped running in 2011, the after affect was felt by truck owners in the following years, and it is important that those affected get their chance for justice.”

Nera Capital has appointed a leading German law firm to act for the claimants in the case.

When the European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager handed down the historic fine in 2016, she said it was not acceptable that the manufacturers were part of a cartel instead of competing with each other. In 2016 she commented on the more than 30 million trucks on European roads, which accounted for around three quarters of inland transport of goods in Europe, playing a vital role for the European economy.

Ms Byrne echoed these comments and said the firm's success is built through its strong industry relationships and a passion for justice. “This is a pivotal moment for corporate accountability,” she added. “Our investment underscores our commitment to supporting small businesses and consumers who have been impacted by antitrust violations. With a strong track record of committing over £475 million, in aggregate, into claims, we are excited to offer our support to truck owners across Europe, because we believe justice should be accessible to all. Nera Capital stands firm in its mission to level the playing field against corporate misconduct. This class action is not just about compensation but also about holding accountable those who undermine fair competition."

About Nera Capital

·       Established in 2011, Nera Capital is a specialist funding provider to law firms.

·       Provides Law Firm Lend funding across diverse claim portfolios in both the Consumer and Commercial sector.

·       Headquartered in Dublin, the firm also has offices in Manchester and The Netherlands.

.     Member of European Litigation Funders Association.

.     www.neracapital.com

Read More

Nera Capital Funding Truck Cartel Claims

By Harry Moran |

The European truck cartel case has long stood out as one of the most prominent examples of litigation funders looking to support mass claims against large companies over their breaches of competition rules. The latest announcement of a funder supporting such a claim continues to demonstrate the importance of these case types.

An article in Business Mondays highlights a recent announcement from Nera Capital, a legal finance firm based in Dublin, that it will be funding over 25,000 claims as part of the truck cartel case. The claims brought against truck suppliers has been one of the most high profile class action cases in Europe, following the 2016 European Commission ruling which found MAN, Volvo/Renault, Daimler, Iveco, and DAF guilty of breaking EU antitrust rules over their co-ordination of pricing.

Aisling Byrne, director at Nera Capital, highlighted the importance of third-party funding for the claims being brought against these truck manufacturers, stating that “while the cartel stopped running in 2011, the after effect was felt by truck owners in the following years, and it is important that those affected get their chance for justice.” The article also states that Nera Capital has appointed a German law firm to provide legal representation for the claimants it is funding.

Byrne also emphasised that Nera Capital’s investment in the truck cartel case aligned with “its mission to level the playing field against corporate misconduct”, and that this case “is not just about compensation but also about holding accountable those who undermine fair competition.”

Apple and Omni Bridgeway Spar Over Venue for Subpoena Fight

By Harry Moran |

As LFJ reported earlier this month, the world of patent litigation funding has once again generated a high-profile dispute, as Apple pressed a court to enforce a subpoena against Omni Bridgeway over the funder’s alleged role in a patent infringement case brought against the technology giant. The legal fight continues to evolve last week, as the two parties seek to find favourable ground in a venue of their choosing.

An article in Reuters provides a recap of the events that have led up to the current standoff between Apple and Omni Bridgeway, before shedding light on the current state of affairs. At issue is the court venue following Apple’s filing of a motion to compel compliance regarding its subpoena of Omni Bridgeway for information relating to the MPH patent infringement lawsuit. The case had been assigned to the Delaware district’s chief judge, U.S. District Judge Colm Connolly, who has become a familiar name in the litigation funding world over his standing order enforcing disclosure of third-party funding in patent cases. 

Unsurprisingly, Omni Bridgeway filed a motion to transfer the matter to the Northern District of California, stating that this court is the venue which “issued the subject subpoena and that is presiding over the underlying litigation’. The motion argued that this transfer “promotes judicial economy and prevents the risk of inconsistent rulings”, and went on to point out that “Litigating this issue in California is not inconvenient for Apple, a California corporation, with California lawyers party to the underlying California litigation.”

In response, Apple’s lawyers responded to the motion to transfer in a letter to Chief Judge Connolly, “injects unnecessary delay into the briefing, and will likely delay resolution of Apple’s motion to compel.”

Omni Bridgeway’s motion to transfer can be read here. Apple’s letter responding to the motion can be read here.

High Insolvency Rates and Case Backlogs Drive Growth of Legal Funding in India

By Harry Moran |

Whilst the majority of coverage on third-party legal funding tends to focus on established jurisdictions like Australia, the UK and US, one of the countries showing signs of life for the funding sector is India.

An article in Economic Times looks at the rise of litigation funders in India and explores how this niche but growing market has seen startup funders focus on arbitration and insolvency disputes as an area to establish a market foothold. The article highlights nationwide data that shows ‘a total of 7,567 companies across sectors were brought into administration until March end’ and that ‘45 million cases are pending in courts across the country, including about six million cases in 25 high courts and 83,800 cases in the Supreme Court.’

Speaking with top executives at funders and leading experts from Indian law firms, the Economic Times article examines how these issues within the legal system, combined with the current economic climate, have created opportunities for these funders to provide much-needed capital to alleviate the backlog of cases waiting in the courts.

Kundan Shahi, CEO of LegalPay, offered some insights into the funder’s current business strategy and explained that whilst they are largely focused on plaintiff-side funding, they “have also started to fund defendants in certain cases.” As for the underlying business fundamentals of LegalPay’s investment model, Shahi said, “We are expecting a maximum timeline of 36 months to recover our investments and an average IRR (internal rate of return) of 22-27%, with an average return of 12-15%, on a case-to-case basis.”

Outside of traditional litigation funders, there are companies like Mumbai-based SingleDebt, who provide legal advisory services to those embroiled in disputes with creditors. SingleDebt’s founder Harish Parmar, illustrated how the company assists its clients “through negotiation and mediation with creditors,” but for situations where litigation is unavoidable SingleDebt will “explore TPLF (third-party litigation funding) options to ease the financial burden on our clients.” Parmar goes on to explain that these funders can still provide significant value to their clients, by enabling them “to pursue their claims without depleting their resources.”

Community Spotlights

Member Spotlight: Andrew Bourhill

By John Freund |

As a former litigator who recently obtained his MBA, Andrew offers a unique perspective in his role of creating, developing, and maintaining business relationships with law firms and litigants as LF2 expands its commercial program.

Andrew is an Associate Director of Investments at LF2. In his role, Andrew works with the Underwriting and Investment team to both analyze and develop potential funding opportunities. Andrew received a Dean’s Merit Scholarship from Cardozo Law School and an MBA from Columbia Business School. Andrew practiced as a commercial litigator prior to entering the litigation finance industry.

Company Name and Description:  Lex Ferenda Litigation Funding LLC. We specialize in funding single commercial cases starting at $1 million.

Company Website: www.lf-2.com

Year Founded: 2020

Headquarters:  Rye, New York

Area of Focus: Business development and underwriting.

Member Quote: I’m grateful to be able to make an impact in such a dynamic industry, particularly as it continues to grow and enhance outcomes within and beyond the legal community.

Read More

Litigation Lending Services Announces a New $35million Credit Facility 

By Harry Moran |

Litigation Lending Services (LLS), a pioneering force in the litigation funding industry for over 25 years, proudly announces the completion of a strategic $35 million credit facility with a leading Australian based global alternative asset manager. This credit facility further bolsters the Company's robust financial structure in tandem with its existing fund and balance sheet. 

Known for its commitment to social impact investment alongside handling insolvency and commercial and class action claims, LLS continues its mission to support those in their legal battles while making a positive difference in the community. 

As demonstrated by the recent announcement of the $180.4m settlement in the Stolen Wages Western Australia class action, LLS’s strategic approach to litigation financing combines rigorous case evaluation with a passion for driving positive societal change, making it an attractive opportunity for investors seeking both financial returns and meaningful contributions to the community. 

"We are thrilled to have successfully secured a new finance partnership, reinforcing our financial stability and positioning us for continued growth and impact," stated Chair Shaun Bonétt. “This not only strengthens our ability to support meritorious cases but also reinforces our belief that everyone deserves fair access to legal recourse, regardless of their financial situation.” 

With an impressive track record of fostering access to justice, Litigation Lending Services remains at the forefront of the industry. As LLS continues to celebrate its 25th anniversary, the funding further ensures that the Company is well positioned to continue its vital work providing crucial support to those who might otherwise lack access to the legal system. 

For more information about Litigation Lending Services, please visit https://litigationlending.com.au or contact:

Susan Wynne
Chief Executive Officer (Acting)
Litigation Lending Services
02 90519990
swynne@litlend.com.au

About Litigation Lending Services 

Litigation Lending Services is (LLS) a leading litigation funder with 25 years of experience in supporting insolvency, commercial claims and class actions with a key focus on funding social impact litigation. With a strong financial foundation and a commitment to justice, LLS empowers claimants to pursue meritorious cases, driving both financial and societal benefits.

Read More

LCM – Trading Update for 2024 Financial Year 

By Harry Moran |

Litigation Capital Management Limited (AIM:LIT), an alternative asset manager specialising in dispute financing solutions internationally, is pleased to provide an update on its business for the 2024 financial year ended 30 June 2024.

We are pleased to report another successful year with eight investments concluding in the period generating realisations for LCM, inclusive of performance fees, totalling AUD$56.0m.  This is compared to LCM’s invested capital of AUD$23.8m, representing a multiple on invested capital (MOIC) of 2.4x. This performance aligns with our long-term track record of an average MOIC of 2.7x from investments concluded within the last 13 years, and underscores the successful execution of our strategy.  

Moreover, we have made a strong start to our 2025 financial year.  Shortly after the 2024 financial year end, a single case investment concluded generating realizations for LCM of at least AUD$12.5m, including performance fees, compared to LCM’s invested capital of AUD$1.5m, representing a MOIC of 8.3x. 

PeriodRealisations (AUD$m)Invested Capital (AUD$m)MOIC multiple
H128.48.83.2x
H227.615.01.8x
FY2456.023.82.4x
Post Period end12.51.58.3x

The average duration of cases concluded in FY24 was 45 months - slightly longer than our general expectation of 36-42 months, which remains unchanged.  This largely reflects the COVID related delays that we have previously communicated which impacted several of the investments that concluded in the period.  Importantly, elongated time has not adversely impacted on investment performance. 

We continue to invest in what we believe are the highest quality legal claims, collaborating with leading law firms and barristers in our respective markets.  We have seen high demand for our capital in the second half of the year and expect to report New Commitments for FY24 in excess of AUD$250m (FY23: AUD$176m). It remains our key strategic priority to continue to grow New Commitments, and thus ensure LCM achieves additional financial scale.

Our current portfolio of investments, both direct investments that are entirely funded via our own balance sheet and those in which we are co-invested alongside our managed external funds, continue to perform in line with our expectations.  

Patrick Moloney, CEO of LCM, commented: “The performance of our concluded investments in our 2024 financial year highlights the strength and effectiveness of our investment strategy. Through our rigorous investment process, we have assembled a high-quality portfolio of uncorrelated legal finance assets that are positioned to deliver attractive future aggregate investment performance. Given our access to capital, further growing New Commitments remains our key strategic priority and we are well on track. We see significant upside potential here. 

“We look forward to updating our investors on our strategic progress with our full-year results presentation on

19 September and are excited about our future opportunities.” 

Below is a brief summary of selected investments that concluded in the second half of our 2024 financial year. 

Binding Settlement reached  - Direct balance sheet Investment

A successful outcome in a dispute investment which forms part of LCMs portfolio of 100% direct investments has been achieved. The proceedings were heard in the Supreme Court of Western Australia and included two levels of appeal at which LCM’s funded party was successful at each level.  A binding settlement deed has been executed by the parties resulting in the realisation of LCM’s investment. The investment is one of four legacy disputes held at cost within our financial statements.  Details of the returns are highlighted below:

AUD$mInvestment performance
Invested capital 2.8
Investment return9.2
Total revenue12.0
MOIC4.3x

Binding Settlement reached - Direct balance sheet Investment

A further successful outcome was achieved with respect to a portfolio of insolvency claims related to the failure of an Australian listed construction company. A binding settlement deed was executed by the parties resulting in the realisation of LCM’s investment. The investment also forms part of LCMs portfolio of 100% direct investments. Details of the returns are highlighted below:

AUD$mInvestment performance
Invested capital 2.8
Investment return7.4
Total revenue10.3
MOIC3.7x

Furthermore, below is a summary of the investment that concluded shortly after our financial year end. 

Bilateral Investment Treaty - Fund I Investment

LCM funded a claim advanced in respect of a breach of a bilateral investment treaty and brought under the International Centre For Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) Convention. The Tribunal issued an award in July 2023 in favour of LCM’s funded party for USD$76.7m plus interest and costs.  The Respondent sought to challenge the award, but the parties have now reached a settlement in advance of the annulment hearing. The terms of the settlement are confidential. 

The claim forms part of LCM’s managed Global Alternative Returns Fund (“Fund I”) and was funded directly from LCM’s balance sheet (25%) and Fund I investors (75%). Details of the returns are highlighted below:

AUD$mInvestment performanceLCM performance metricsFund I performance metrics
Invested capital 5.91.54.4
Investment return23.35.817.5
Total revenue29.27.321.9
MOIC on investment 5.05.05.0
Performance fee*-5.2(5.2)
Gross profit23.311.012.3
MOIC inclusive of performance fees5.0x8.3x3.8x

*The investment returns are subject to change based on the prevailing FX rate and timing of distribution 

About LCM

Litigation Capital Management (LCM) is an alternative asset manager specialising in disputes financing solutions internationally, which operates two business models. The first is direct investments made from LCM's permanent balance sheet capital and the second is third party fund management. Under those two business models, LCM currently pursues three investment strategies: Single-case funding, Portfolio funding and Acquisitions of claims. LCM generates its revenue from both its direct investments and also performance fees through asset management.

LCM has an unparalleled track record driven by disciplined project selection and robust risk management.

Currently headquartered in Sydney, with offices in London, Singapore, Brisbane and Melbourne, LCM listed on AIM in December 2018, trading under the ticker LIT.

www.lcmfinance.com

Read More

Legal-Bay Pre-Settlement Funding Announces Funding for Fireworks Injuries and Building Explosions

By Harry Moran |

Legal-Bay LLC, the premier Pre Settlement Funding Company, reports that they are seeing an uptick in lawsuits against negligent pyrotechnicians and residential homeowners in the wake of the 4th of July holiday. Fireworks injuries and property damages join the escalating lawsuits that have been filed due to building explosions at gas stations, chemical plants, and oil refineries, falling under such categories as worker's comp, premises liability, personal injury, wrongful death, and beyond.  

Explosion lawsuits are filed more often than one would think. Whether in a place of business or a residential property, danger lurks for victims of others' negligence. Accidental gas leaks or faulty propane tanks are probably the most well-known type of house or building explosion, but sometimes, negligent installation by inexperienced workers or business owners looking to cut corners can lead to disaster. Likewise, if a person is injured or their property is damaged by fireworks—whether from a professional show or a neighbor's backyard—they are entitled to compensation.

Explosion payouts obviously vary depending on the severity of the damage caused and extent of injuries. Just last year, for example, a New Jersey man who suffered severe burns from an explosion while working on an electrical panel in 2019 sued his employer for gross negligence. The man was instructed to work on the electric panel even though he was not a licensed electrician. The resulting explosion inflicted burns over half of his body, requiring over 100 surgeries and a lifetime of future care. He was awarded $28MM for pain, suffering, and loss of ability to earn a salary.

Chris Janish, CEO of Legal-Bay, commented, "Extreme explosions can result in chemical burns, broken bones, and sometimes even death, not to mention the environmental impact and property damage that can occur. Legal Bay stands at the ready to assist victims of any type of explosion get the money they have coming to them."If you or a loved one was seriously injured or killed in an explosion, you may have grounds for a lawsuit. To apply for a cash advance lawsuit loan from your anticipated lawsuit settlement, please visit the company's website HERE or call 877.571.0405 where agents are standing by to hear about your specific case. 

Read More

ALFA Welcomes Shine Lawyers as Newest Associate Member

By Harry Moran |

In a post on LinkedIn, The Association of Litigation Funders of Australia (ALFA) announced that it is welcoming Shine Lawyers as its newest Associate Member. Shine Lawyers becomes the 13th Associate Member of ALFA, following the inclusion of law firm Mackay Chapman earlier this month.

Shine Lawyers has been involved in some of the most prominent class action cases in Australia, with recent examples including the Northern Territory Stolen Generation and PFAS Contamination class actions. The law firm was founded in 1976 by Kerry Shine in Toowoomba, Queensland, and has since grown to include over 1,000 team members across 42 locations. In 2015, Shine expanded into New Zealand for the first time with acquisition of Andrew Hooker Lawyers in Auckland, which now also includes an office in Christchurch. 

In the post, ALFA said it was looking forward to working with Vicky Antzoulatos and Craig Allsopp, Joint Heads of Class Actions, and the rest of the team at Shine Lawyers.

Saudi Billionaire Estate Dispute Highlights Challenges of Family Law Funding

By Harry Moran |

Whilst it is often the funding of large class action claims or high-profile patent infringement cases that receive the most attention, one of the most unique areas of legal funding is in the world of family disputes for high-net-worth individuals. These cases range from inheritance and estate disputes to contentious divorce proceedings, all of which come with significant financial sums at stake.

An article in Bloomberg Law provides insight into one such case of third-party funding for a family dispute, as it focuses on Therium Capital Management’s involvement in the legal fight over the estate of late Saudi billionaire, Osama Ismail Abudawood. Therium reportedly began providing litigation funding to Abudawood’s wife and daughter, Eleanor de Leon and Alaa Abudawood, who were embroiled in a legal fight with Abudawood’s brothers over the estate. 

Therium provided funding to support de Leon and her daughter’s case in 2019, with the pair looking to secure a larger portion of the estate, after they accused Abudawood’s brothers of refusing to honour the deceased’s wishes to see his wife and daughter ‘to be bought out of the company at the fair market value of their interest in his holdings.’ A global settlement between the parties was reached in 2022, but Eleanor and Alaa reportedly refused to sign the agreement, which led to delays and saw the case reach the US District Court for the Central District of California where Abudawood’s brothers successfully petitioned the court to enforce the settlement.

Bloomberg Law’s reporting suggests that despite Therium’s initial expectations of receiving a payout from a 10-figure settlement that Abudawood’s wife and daughter hoped to secure, in the end, the pair’s pay out from the settlement is valued at $88 million. This disappointingly low sum caps a difficult engagement for the litigation funder when combined with many years of delays, 18 lawsuits in three separate jurisdictions, and even one instance of their clients being fined more than $750,000 for contempt.

Robert Martorana, founder of REMO Litigation Finance, spoke with Bloomberg Law and noted that the Abudawood case shows the difficulties for third-party funders when engaging in family disputes. Martorana explained that, “funders tend to avoid cases where there’s a potential for people to act commercially unreasonable,” which is most often the case “when there are personal elements involved.”

Fundraising

View All

Case Developments

View All

Legal Innovation

View All

People Moves

View All

Regulatory

View All

Consumer

View All

Thought Leadership

View All
The LFJ Podcast
Hosted By Invenio LLP |