(Adds chairman comment, recasts)
LONDON, May 21 (Reuters) - British private equity fund Electra saw its diluted net asset value (NAV) per share rise 12 percent in the first half of its financial year and said it would make its first ever dividend payment.
An interim dividend of 1 percent of net asset value will be paid, amounting to 38 pence per share, the company said on Thursday, in its results for the six months to March 31, 2015.
Electra is planning to return 3 percent of NAV per year to shareholders via cash dividends or share buybacks, following a strategic review that began after activist investor Edward Bramson attempted to introduce sweeping changes to the firm last year.
Following Bramson's failure to shake up the company's board and implement a raft of proposals, Electra announced moves including cuts to management fees and a stronger focus on cash dividends and share buybacks.
Chairman Roger Yates said he met with Bramson in mid-April.
"We try and engage with all shareholders. We've listened to his views and the position hasn't really changed that much," Yates told Reuters on a telephone call.
Bramson is currently Electra's largest shareholder through his investment vehicle Sherborne, with a 27.2 percent holding.
Electra's diluted NAV rose by 12 percent to 3,548 pence in the period. The Hotter Shoes backer aims for returns in a range of 10-15 percent.
The fund's portfolio swelled by 17.2 percent to 1.49 billion pounds in the half-year period. Electra added it had invested 129 million pounds ($200 million), including in TGI Fridays and Allflex Corporation, and realised 121 million pounds' worth of assets.
($1 = 0.6440 pounds) (Reporting by Freya Berry; Editing by Mark Potter)