Thomas Boone Pickens, Jr.: Mesa Petroleum


Thomas Boone Pickens, Jr. built Mesa into one of the largest independent oil companies in the world, from 1956 to 1981. T. Boone Pickens managed Mesa’s first major acquisition, a takeover of the Hugoton Production Company, which was 30 times larger than Mesa. He then shifted his focus to acquiring other oil and gas companies through solicited and unsolicited buyout bids and other merger and acquisition activity.

T. Boone Pickens corporate acquisitions made him a celebrity during the 1980s. His most famous deals included attempted buyouts of Cities Service, Gulf Oil, Phillips Petroleum, and Unocal. During the 1980’s, Pickens led successful acquisitions of Pioneer Petroleum and the mid-continent assets of Tenneco.

In 1997 Thomas Boone Pickens, Jr. founded BP Capital Management which was then called the BP Energy Fund. The initials stood for “Boone Pickens” and were not related to British Petroleum. He holds a 46% interest in the company which runs two hedge funds: Capital Commodity and Capital Equity. Both companies invest mainly in traditional energy companies such as oil, natural gas, and nuclear power companies like Halliburton, Schlumberger, and Shaw Group.

In 2006, Thomas Boone Pickens, Jr. earned $990 million from his equity in the two funds and $120 million from his portion of the 20% fees applied to fund profits. In 2007, Pickens earned $2.7 billion, as BP Capital Equity Fund grew by 24%, and the then $590 million Capital Commodity fund grew by 40%. This growth was partially thanks to large positions in the stocks of Suncor Energy, ExxonMobil and Occidental Petroleum.