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Odyssey Marine Exploration Reports First Quarter 2013 Results

TAMPA, Fla., May 10, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMEX), a pioneer in the fields of deep-ocean shipwreck and offshore mineral exploration, reported results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2013.

First Quarter 2013 Highlights

  • Monetized Odyssey's mineral assets for the first time with the sale of an ownership stake in Oceanica Resources (Oceanica), a company engaged in seafloor mineral exploration, generating gross proceeds of $15 million for 15% of the company. Odyssey currently holds 62.6% ownership in Oceanica after the sale.
  • Preliminary assay results of core samples from Oceanica's mineral deposit are ongoing and confirm a high-value resource. Processing trials have been completed that confirm the resource can be feasibly and economically processed.
  • Established multiple controlled foreign entities to efficiently manage anticipated future income streams from various offshore projects.
  • Received an additional $1.8 million from the sale of silver bullion recovered from the SS Gairsoppa shipwreck, bringing total proceeds from the deep-ocean project to more than $41 million. To date, 1,218 Gairsoppa silver bars have been recovered and sold. An additional $500,000 was realized from sale of gold that was extracted from the silver smelting process.
  • Proven salvage vessel and equipment secured under charter agreements for the completion of expected silver recoveries from the Gairsoppa and SS Mantola scheduled to commence in late May. Additional research recently obtained increases the company's optimism for efficient recovery results from both wrecks.

Management Commentary

"In the first quarter, we made strong progress in both offshore mineral exploration and deep-ocean shipwreck recovery," said Greg Stemm, Odyssey's chief executive officer. "This included the monetization of offshore mineral exploration assets that have substantially strengthened our balance sheet and laid the foundation for a productive year ahead.

"It's important to note that although the $15 million cash generated this quarter through the sale of a portion of our equity in Oceanica was very positive from a cash flow, balance sheet and shareholder value standpoint, it was not recorded as income or as a gain on our Q1 income statement, and $3.7 million of the $6.5 million we spent developing this asset was recorded as an operations and research expense in this quarter. While the remaining 62.6 million shares of Oceanica continue to be carried as a zero on our balance sheet, the sale demonstrated the value of this asset and how we have the opportunity to monetize our efforts in mineral exploration well before actual mining revenue is generated.

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