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Tech fund to specialise in military applications

A new Hong Kong-based specialist fund is offering UK investors the opportunity to put their money behind former Ministry of Defence equipment now used in the commercial sector.

The Circus Capital technology fund is joining forces with the MOD to develop equipment to test foods for contamination. The same technology was originally designed for chemical warfare purposes.

The relatively small £1.75m investment in Alaska Food Diagnostics is just one type of risky venture the fund will seek to invest in. Such investments offer big potential rewards to investors but come with a high degree of volatility.

The fund will put 75 per cent of its capital in the world&#39s leading technology funds through a fund-of-funds vehicle. The remaining quarter will be used as seed capital for the commercialisation of military research applications.

With a high minimum investment set at £65,000, the fund is designed for sophisticated investors looking for long-term capital growth from the technology sector.

The mutual fund has so far raised around £3.4m and will close once it reaches £34m. Circus Capital&#39s Harvey Boulter says this is so future investors cannot dilute the fund with extra capital as it grows.

Circus Capital has a low profile in the UK because it is not allowed to market itself although it sells funds through IFAs. It also offers a protected growth fund which is geared using with-profits endowment policies.

Boulter says: “We are looking at a number of military projects. We expect to eventually invest in four to six projects.”

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