Odyssey Provides Update On SS Gairsoppa Recovery Operations

TAMPA, Fla., Sept. 11, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Odyssey Marine Exploration (Nasdaq:OMEX), pioneers in the field of deep-ocean exploration, today announced that the chartered vessel working on the SS Gairsoppa project, the Seabed Worker, will make a scheduled port call in Cork, Ireland, beginning September 12, 2012. After taking on fuel, supplies and changing personnel, the Seabed Worker will immediately return to the site to continue recovery operations under an extension of the charter agreement.

No materials recovered from the shipwreck site will be landed during this port call in Ireland. Pursuant to Odyssey's agreement with the UK Government, the company will not comment on the status of operations or recovery of cargo until any additional silver recovered has been transported to the secure facility in the United Kingdom.

"As with our port call in August, making our regularly scheduled crew change in Ireland instead of the UK allows us to spend an additional two, or more, working days on the site. As the weather conditions tend to become less friendly in the North Atlantic as we get closer to October, every additional day of operations is important," said Mark Gordon, Odyssey President and COO. "The processing of the silver delivered in July remains on schedule with the first portion available for sale in September. We expect all processing of the silver recovered to date to be completed during the fourth quarter. We're delighted by the recent move in silver prices. If they hold or continue to increase, it will significantly boost the value of this project."

About the SS Gairsoppa

Odyssey is conducting the Gairsoppa project under contract with the UK Department for Transport. Under the terms of the agreement, which follows standard commercial practices, Odyssey bears the risk of search and recovery and retains 80% of the net salved value of the Gairsoppa silver cargo after recovering its expenses. The contract was awarded to Odyssey following a competitive tender process.

The Gairsoppa was a merchant ship torpedoed by a German U-boat during World War II. During the War, the UK Government insured privately owned cargo under their War Risk Insurance program. After making an insurance payment of approximately £325,000 (1941 value) to the owners of the silver cargo lost aboard the Gairsoppa, the UK Government became the owners of the insured cargo. As some sources, including "Lloyd's War Losses" indicate a total silver cargo worth £600,000 (1941 value) lost aboard the Gairsoppa, there may have been additional government-owned silver cargo aboard that would have been self-insured.

Odyssey commenced recovery operations utilizing the chartered 291-foot Seabed Worker in late May after completing a series of reconnaissance dives earlier in the year. Odyssey has contracted JBR Recovery Limited, one of Europe's leading silver recovery and precious metal processing specialists, to support the logistics, refining and monetization of the silver cargo recovered.

About Swire Seabed/Seabed Worker

Swire Seabed AS represents experience and ultra modern equipment for deep waters in the subsea industry. The Company provides high quality services within Inspection, Maintenance & Repair, Construction Support and Subsea Decommissioning. In addition Seabed has expertise, experience and special equipment for deep sea wreck salvage. Seabed operates worldwide with the two vessels Seabed Worker and Seabed Prince.

Seabed Worker is an 88 m Multi Purpose Support Vessel. As a standard spread the vessel has accommodation for 66 people, Class 2 DP System, 650 m2 deck area, Voith Schneider propulsion with active roll stabilization, active heave compensated 100 Te offshore crane, a Perry Slingsby 4000 m XLX ROV and a Schilling HD 5000m (moonpol) ROV. For the salvage operations in 2012 the Seabed Worker is also fitted with specialized equipment.

About Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.  

Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMEX) is engaged in deep-ocean exploration using innovative methods and state-of-the-art technology. The Company is a world leader in shipwreck exploration, conducting extensive search and archaeological recovery operations on deep-ocean shipwrecks around the world. Odyssey also has a minority ownership stake in Neptune Minerals, a company focused on discovering and commercializing high-value mineral deposits from the ocean floor and in Chatham Rock Phosphate, Ltd, a company focused on discovering and commercializing seabed deposits of rock phosphate and other minerals. Odyssey also provides contracting services, including proprietary deep-ocean expertise and equipment, to governments and companies around the world.

Odyssey offers various ways to share in the excitement of deep-ocean exploration by making shipwreck treasures and artifacts available to the general public, students, and collectors through its webstore, exhibits, books, television, merchandise, educational programs and virtual museum located at www.OdysseysVirtualMuseum.com. The company also maintains a Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/OdysseyMarine and a Twitter feed @OdysseyMarine.

The public will have the opportunity to share in the excitement of Odyssey's 2012 recovery operations when television specials produced by JWM Productions premiere on Discovery Channel in the United States and Channel 5 in the United Kingdom.

Information about Odyssey's project, including pictures of the operation, can be found on Odyssey's website: http://www.shipwreck.net/shipwrecks.php . Those interested in staying up to date on the latest news about Odyssey are encouraged to sign up for free email alerts: http://www.shipwreck.net/register.php .

Following previous successful engagements in New Orleans, Tampa, Detroit, Oklahoma City, Charlotte, Baltimore, Sarasota, San Antonio, and Hot Springs, Odyssey's SHIPWRECK! exhibit is currently preparing to open at The Museum of Science in Boston on September 23, 2012.

For details on Odyssey's activities and its commitment to the preservation of maritime heritage please visit www.shipwreck.net .

The Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=7185

Odyssey Marine Exploration believes the information set forth in this Press Release may include "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Act of 1934. Certain factors that could cause results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements are set forth in "Risk Factors" in Part I, Item 1A of the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
CONTACT: Liz Shows         Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.         (813) 876-1776 x 2335         lshows@shipwreck.net

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