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Hands ups pressure on Novera

GUY Hands, chairman of private equity firm Terra Firma, is playing hardball in his bid to buy wind farm group Novera.<br /><br />The takeover bid is being spearheaded by Infinis, a green energy firm owned by Terra Firma. <br /><br />A spokesman for Infinis said Novera was in crisis and would be well-advised to sell up. Earlier this month, Novera&rsquo;s chief executive quit, just months after the departure of its finance director. <br /><br />Infinis also said all small wind energy firms would be bought eventually, as they need large amounts of capital to succeed. Infinis could provide this thanks to Terra Firma&rsquo;s backing, she said. <br /><br />Infinis is trying to persuade the firm to accept a 62.5p a share takeover approach that values Novera at around &pound;90m. <br /><br />The offer is at a 43 per cent premium to Novera&rsquo;s share price over the last six months.<br /><br />But with City analysts saying that a fairer price would be around the 90p mark, Novera&rsquo;s chairman Roy Franklin dismissed the overture.<br /><br />As a prelude to the bid, Infinis last week boosted its stake in Novera from 29 per cent to 42 per cent by buying tranche of shares from Credit Suisse.