Evans Products' lenders demanded payment.

The Miami-based company said it may have to file for protection under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code unless it can renegotiate or refinance about $600 million of indebtedness that matured Jan. 15. The company said that lenders set a March 11 deadline for payment and that it deferred declaring the March 1 dividend on its $1.40 and $2.10 cumulative junior preferred stock. Separately, Sharon Steel Corp., a Victor Posner company that owns 43% of Evans Products, said it failed to pay $23 million in interest due March 1 on its 13.5% subordinated sinking-fund debentures due 2000. Unless payment is made within 30 days, Sharon said, it will be in default, but it added that negotiations are continuing to obtain the needed funds.

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