The Litigation Finance Journal has spoken with Chris Garvey, member of the Board of Investments at Stonward. In this episode, Chris discussed the litigation funding market in Spain, the challenges and opportunities for funders there, what cases Stonward looks to finance, implications of the Voss report, and much more!
Chris pointed out that “there is a very healthy and active, vibrant-no win, no fee industry within the legal community in Spain”, and highlighted the two areas in which he is seeing more funding deployed: “the competition space, where you have the need for expensive high value expert analysis to validate the damages”, and the litigation, finances and insolvency areas. “And of course we have seen one of the more prominent cases across the industry coming out of Spain, which was the Peterson cases against Argentina”, he said, and added, “which was originated by Armando Betancor, interestingly enough, who is the President of the Board of Investments of Stonward”.
Regarding the specific challenges and opportunities that funders face in Spain, Chris talked about the economic costs of justice in Spain, and about how “historically, there hasn’t been up until now a Collective action regime that functioned in the same way as we would see in the US, for example. However, on the flip side, the opportunity set is expanding because the EU Representative Action Directive is now in force. That will dramatically change the landscape in Spain”.
The Voss report:
In this episode one cannot fail to mention the Voss report. About it Chris explained that “if the recommendations in the Voss Report are implemented in their current form, it will directly affect the supply and demand dynamics, and it will quite simply reduce the supply of capital for certain higher risk deals. That means is that some cases this simply won’t get funded, and not because they’re bad cases, but because they could have complex and controversial expert evidences”.
Asked by John Freud, the interviewer on what can litigation funders do to combat its implementation, Chris has it clear: “what I think funders are best advised to do is to engage directly with Axel Voss and other legislators that are bringing this forward to educate and to lobby in a non confrontational way”.