Burford Capital, the AIM-listed investor in corporate lawsuits -- said on Monday it has made its first two investments since raising 80 million pounds ($132.3 million) in an IPO last month.
Burford has invested $2 million in a trade secret theft and breach of contract case pending in a U.S. federal court and put up $2.3 million for a shareholder dispute over proceeds from the sale of a business.
Commercial dispute funds seek to secure a proportion of the payouts awarded in legal cases by paying a proportion of the costs. Burford is chaired by former Barclays chairman and chief executive officer Peter Middleton and competes with London-listed Juridica Investments.
It also said in a statement that more investments are imminent and it is in due diligence with a number of the 25 potential cases it has reviewed in the last month.
The two cases are for Burford's short duration portfolio of disputes expected to pay a return within 18 months.
The trade secret theft case has a trial date set for May next year. Burford will be entitled to receive 35 percent to 67 percent of settlements depending on the size of payout.
The second investment is structured to pay three times Burford's commitment if the case is settled during arbitration, and four times if settled subsequently. ($1=.6047 Pound) (Reporting by Chris Vellacott)