IMF Bentham launches new US$500 million Fund in response to increased worldwide demand for dispute resolution finance

Jeremy Sambrook
Group General Counsel and Company Secretary | +61 8 9225 2324 | [email protected]
Paul Rand
Chief Investment Officer - Canada | +1 416 583 5720 | [email protected]
Marella Gibson
Chief Marketing Officer - Australia and Asia | +61 2 8223 3517 | [email protected]
Gretchen Lyn Koehler
Chief Marketing Officer - North America | +1 212 488 5331 | [email protected]

SYDNEY, 20 June 2019: IMF Bentham (ASX:IMF) (operating in the US and Canada as Bentham IMF) announces the launch of a new US$500 million fund (‘Fund 5’) to underwrite non-US disputes around the world. 

Fund 5 is IMF’s second non-US Fund and is being launched only twenty months after the launch of the first non-US Funds (‘Funds 2 & 3’) and only five months since Funds 2 & 3 were upsized in January 2019. Fund 5 also closely follows the launch in November 2018 of IMF’s second US Fund (‘Fund 4’). IMF is increasing its fund capacity in direct response to the exponential growth in demand for dispute resolution finance around the world and IMF now has close to A$2 billion in combined funds under management globally.

IMF Managing Director and CEO, Andrew Saker says: “IMF is experiencing strong market demand for funding across all jurisdictions. Since 2015 IMF has recorded an 85% increase in the number of non-US funding applications and a 149% increase in US funding applications. Demand for dispute resolution finance is growing as a result of increased awareness, the increasing costs of arbitration and litigation and regulatory changes in some jurisdictions which now allow parties to seek dispute resolution finance. Demand is particularly strong in Asia and Canada where dispute resolution finance is still relatively new but it is becoming a mainstream global financial product.”

How will the capital be invested?

Fund 5 will invest in disputes outside the US, including Australia, Asia, Canada and the EMEA region, providing finance for law firms, companies, groups and individuals, across a broad range of dispute types including insolvencies, group actions, international arbitration and commercial litigation.

Who are the investors in Fund 5?

Fund 5’s initial size is US$500 million and investors have the option to roll into a successor fund on the same terms, to increase the overall new capital commitments to US$1 billion.

IMF committed US$100 million in cash to Fund 5 and remaining funds were contributed by external investors, reflecting the strong investor confidence in IMF’s business. IMF is increasingly a fund manager and investment adviser whose investors include endowment funds, foundations, investment professionals and family offices. The principal external investors in Fund 5 are:

  • Funds managed by, and investors represented by, Partners Capital Investment Group, LLP (Partners Capital). Partners Capital is a leading outsourced investment office based in London, Boston, New York, Hong Kong and Singapore which manages over US$24 billion on behalf of endowments, foundations, investment professionals and family offices.Partners Capital’s Phoenix II Fund is also an investor in IMF’s Fund 2 and Fund 4.
  • Funds managed by Harvard Management Company (Harvard), Amitell Capital and Balmoral Wood. Harvard is a US based manager of institutional investment funds and funds managed by Harvard are also invested in IMF’s Fund 4. Amitell Capital is a Singapore based private investment firm, which is also an investor in IMF’s Fund 3 and Fund 4. Balmoral Wood is a Canadian fund-of funds investor specialising in dispute resolution finance.
How is Fund 5 structured?

Fund 5 is an exempted limited partnership incorporated under the laws of Cayman Islands formed for the purpose of making investments in non-US dispute resolution finance investments via wholly-owned subsidiary entities. IMF Bentham Cayman Advisory Services (IMF Advisory), a newly established wholly-owned subsidiary of IMF, is the appointed investment advisor of Fund 5.