A market leader in large scale
Commercial Litigation Funding

FAQs

What type of cases does Calunius fund ?
The Calunius Fund funds large-scale commercial litigation and arbitration claims in both domestic and international contexts under a wide range of applicable laws. Up until now, most litigation funding opportunities have arisen in the huge litigation and arbitration markets serving the needs of small to medium sized claimant enterprises that have disputes with much larger entities (the best examples are in bilateral investment treaty (BIT) arbitration where the respondent state has expropriated claimant’s assets).

In other situations, businesses or investors may suffer losses with a common cause (perhaps as result of an investment fraud). In aggregate, those losses can be significant and Litigation Funding could enable those losses to be recovered for all individuals in the group without any individual having to take litigation risk on behalf of others.

All the above are situations that cry out for Litigation Funding in contexts where Calunius Capital has particular expertise.
Do you have a minimum claim value?
Yes, it changes from time to time; currently the fund considers cases with a realistic claim value of at least £7.5m.
Where do you fund?
Litigation

• Common Law Jurisdictions, including:

- the UK;

- Australia, New Zealand and Canada;

- Bermuda, British Virgin Islands and Cayman Islands;

- The Channel Islands;

- Hong Kong.

• Civil Law jurisdictions: most EU countries, in particular Germany.

Arbitration

Commercial Arbitration and Investor-State Arbitration under the rules of one of the major international arbitration institutions, such as the ICC, LCIA or ICSID and subject to a wide range of laws can be financed in a variety of venues, against respondents whose assets appear to be available to satisfy any award.
What do you require from a potential claimant in order to consider a case?
In principle, we work with the case materials that are available. Ideally, in order properly to assess the risk, we like to see and evaluate the following items before a decision can be taken:
• The principal documents (contracts, correspondence etc.) relied on in the case;
• Any witness statements that have been prepared;
• Any Court documents that have been filed;
• A written legal opinion dealing positively with the merits;
• A written, legally coherent justification of the quantum sought in the claim;
• A written estimate of the costs to be incurred in pursuing the claim.

However we do recognise that, depending on the stage the preparations of the case have reached, some of these documents might not be immediately available. In particular we do not necessarily require a Counsel’s Opinion and the Calunius Fund will pay for the preparation of a formal legal review in appropriate cases.
What sort of commercial claimants seek litigation funding for their claims?
There are broadly two types of claimant:

David v Goliath: these claimants are willing but unable to withstand the financial risks of being a claimant. This of course covers insolvent or financially stressed businesses who need to express their rights in litigation but there is a huge litigation market serving fundamentally solvent small to medium sized enterprises that have contractual and other disputes with very much larger entities. In this area of the market “David” turns to Litigation Funding as a means of getting Equality of Arms with “Goliath”. Law firms need to know about Litigation Funding if they are to attract the most interesting instructions from “Davids” wishing (but lacking the wherewithal) to sue Goliaths. Their clients need to know about it if they are to get access to justice here. In our archive, you will find references to our funding of Oxus Gold plc’s arbitration proceedings against the Republic of Uzbekistan, a classic David v Goliath case if there ever was one! You might also want to search against Kardassopoulos, to see another such case which was funded by Allianz when Calunius partner, Christian Stuerwald led their London operations.

Risk Averse plc: these claimants are able but unwilling to finance the risks. This is the context for many a quarrel between General Counsel, eager to pursue a claim he or she regards as strong, and CFO, unwilling to endorse the financial risk of doing so. The internal legal functions of even the largest companies tend to be set objectives around complying with costs budgets (P&L) rather than realising assets (Balance Sheet). Those very costs budgets are often set following predictions of the likely need to defend litigation, rather than to pursue claims. What is at stake here is nothing less than the transformation of the in house legal function from costs centre to profit centre. Enter Litigation Funding! Law firms need to know about Litigation Funding if they are to attract profitable instructions from this class of hitherto risk-averse Claimants. Their clients need to know about Litigation Funding if they are to release the contingent value of their litigation assets. Successful businesses proactively manage other financial risks, including those arising from interest rates, foreign exchange, trade debts etc. Why should dispute risk be any different? Check out our Archive items for our funding of the Elvis Presley Estate to see a good example of this type of transaction.
What's Calunius' track record like and why should we go with Calunius and not another third party funder?
Not many of our cases are in the public arena, but two bilateral investment treaty cases (Rusoro; Oxus Gold) have been disclosed as a function of the fact that the Claimant was a listed company. These cases are ongoing. The CEO of Rusoro, Andre Agapov, says the company considered offers by other funders in Canada, the US and Europe, but that "Calunius came with better terms than any of them."

The other one (which Christian funded while at Allianz) where our presence was disclosed, concluded successfully, after some exceptional conduct by the State of Georgia (See our news section: “Taking on Tbilisi: litigation funding in action” (5 January 2012) and “Fuchs released after settling with Georgia” (2 December 2011)). Particularly noteworthy in the context of the discussion we had about “being in bed together” for four years… Beyond these cases our track record is not in the public domain, but the combined previous results of the partners, especially Christian who had run the Allianz business in the UK, was sufficient to raise £40m from investors in 2010, and a further £50m in 2014.
Do you purchase judgments/awards?
Yes, the fund is able to consider purchasing awards.
Do you fund group/class actions?
Yes, aggregating smaller claims can sometimes be the only way to make it commercially viable to bring a claim. Claim aggregation can take many forms, and the fund is flexible enough to consider them.
How can I be sure you have the expertise I need to take this forward?
The team at Calunius are drawn from a variety of highly knowledgeable disciplines and have worked with some of the world’s leading institutions. As a leading litigation funder we offer innovative thinking and encourage positive and constructive relationships.
How do I know that the Calunius Fund actually has the funds to provide support all the way to the conclusion of my client’s case? As the Calunius Fund is a private company it is not immediately transparent what the Fund’s financial situation is.
The first Calunius Fund raised £40 million of investment in December 2010, the second Calunius Fund raised a further £50 million of investment in March 2014. Calunius is also a founder member of the Association of Litigation Funders in England & Wales, and abides by its Code of Conduct which sets out capital adequacy requirements.
What are the advantages of litigation funding ?
The obvious advantage of litigation finance is to transform the bargaining power of claimants against better-resourced defendants. Calunius helps provide those taking action against large companies with the resources needed to fight a protracted legal battle. Increasingly it is now about equalising resources.
Claimants who have the ability to self-fund benefit from sharing the cost risk of the litigation and having an expert investor confirm that the case is financially viable.
Additionally the funded claimant benefits from the experience of Calunius in funding other cases which ensure best practice is followed in managing the litigation process.
Can I invest in your fund?
The fundraising has been successfully completed for the time being, but we would like to get in touch with you; please contact Mark Wells at mark.wells@calunius.com
Will Calunius pay part of the costs if a case does not need funding for all the costs?
Yes, Calunius can provide funding for all or part of the costs of an action. Of course this depends on each case.
What is the timeline? In other words when should a client approach Calunius for funding - before trial or earlier?
There is no specific timeline but ideally the period before trial should not be less than three months so there is enough time to assess the case.
In an insolvency situation will Calunius consider funding?
Most litigation funding opportunities have arisen serving the needs of small to medium sized claimant enterprises that have disputes with much larger entities. Such claimants may be financially stressed or even technically insolvent, sometimes as a direct result of the behaviour of the defendant. The support of a well-resourced litigation funder could equalise the parties’ firepower.
Do you fund defendants?
We have never funded a defendant; in practice all parties funded by Calunius are claimants.
Do you fund matrimonial disputes?
No, matrimonial disputes are outside the fund’s mandate.
Do you fund domestic US disputes?
Only in exceptional circumstances.

Calunius news and media

Deutsch Amerikanische Juristen Vereinigung e.V. (DAJV) - Working Group Day

Frankfurt, 17 March 2017

The DAJV Working Group Day discussed inter alia New Approaches to Attorney Remuneration and Financing in International Litigation/Arbitration on both sides of the Atlantic in times of Digitalization. Calunius partner Christian Stuerwald joined senior practitioners in a panel discussion about this topic. Click on the headline to access the full programme.

Stans Energy obtains favourable award on jurisdiction

February 2017

An arbitral tribunal in the case of Stans Energy v Kyrgyz Republic has issued an award favourable to the claimant on a number of jurisdictional objections that had been raised by the respondent state in the underlying UNCITRAL proceedings. A press release of the company can be accessed by clicking on the headline.

Calunius announces new Fund and strengthens its team

November 2016

Calunius announces the closing of the Calunius Litigation Risk Fund 3 LP at a total of £100 million of capital. Calunius now advises funds totalling more than £200 million investing in large scale commercial litigation and arbitration assets. Calunius is also delighted to announce the recruitment of Christiane Deniger as Senior Case Assessor. Christiane was most recently a senior associate at a well known international law firm. Click on the headline to access the full press release.

VIEW ALL NEWS ARTICLES

Can't find what you're looking for?

Submit a question