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Mesa's Gas Field Goes Begging


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MESA'S GAS FIELD GOES BEGGING

BOONE PICKENS' MESA HAS $1.2 billion of debt clogging up its books. It also has its rich Hugoton gas field in Kansas. Solution: Sell the field, settle the debt. Problem: No one will pay what Pickens wants. On June 12, Mesa announced it had received no acceptable offers; the highest was $750 million. Now, the company may divvy the property up to attract smaller buyers. It's also reviewing "other financing alternatives," such as debt restructuring. Mesa has enough cash to make debt payments of more than $210 million during the next year, but the squeeze looms in 1998, when $654 million is due.EDITED BY KEITH H. HAMMONDS


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