In the latest sign of the burgeoning international litigation funding market, funder IMF Bentham has announced the launch of a $200m (£160m) vehicle to back its US portfolio.

The new facility was raised by the Australia-based company on behalf of US affiliate Bentham IMF. The parent company’s first formal investment vehicle will be used exclusively to finance US cases and investments.

An unnamed partner, which according to the company is affiliated with a prominent hedge fund, is committing $150m while IMF Bentham will commit up to $50m.

Since launching US operations in 2011, Bentham says it has made 45 investments in litigation matters, concluding 14 of those with an 83% average internal rate of return.

Overall, IMF has completed 187 dispute matters globally since 2001.

Charlie Gollow, Bentham’s US chief executive, said: ‘This capital raise underscores investor confidence in litigation finance and Bentham’s position as one of the top companies in the industry’.

Earlier this month the Gazette reported that investments in litigation in the UK had increased more than 25% in value in the past year. According to research by City firm RPC, litigation funders committed £723m to legal claims in 2016, compared with £575m in 2015.