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Odyssey Marine Exploration Announces First Quarter 2009 Results

Tampa, FL - May 8, 2009 - Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (NasdaqCM: OMEX), pioneers in the field of deep-ocean shipwreck exploration, today filed a quarterly report with the Securities and Exchange Commission detailing results of the Company's first quarter 2009.

For the first quarter of 2009, Odyssey reported revenues of $0.6 million, compared to $0.3 million in the first quarter 2008. The Company also reported a net loss of $5.3 million, compared to a net loss of $6.8 million in 2008. The net loss per share for the first quarter was $0.10, compared to a net loss of $0.14 per share in the first quarter 2008.

"The first quarter of 2009 was an interesting and exciting time for Odyssey. We had a full plate with events as diverse as the US season premiere of Discovery Channel’s 12-episode series "Treasure Quest" in January, followed by the announcement of our discovery of Balchin’s HMS Victory in February, and the Ringing of the Opening Bell at the NASDAQ MarketSite in March. In addition, the Odyssey Explorer was busy working in the "Atlas" area, and we had excellent weather for this time of year, which enabled us to cover a lot of ground. We are very excited about the momentum we have built in both operations and brand recognition. With some new search technology we have added to the Explorer and the renewal of our deal with Discovery Channel, we are looking forward to a productive 2009," said Greg Stemm, Odyssey’s Chief Executive Officer.



The increase in revenue of $0.3 million is primarily related to an increase of over 500 more silver coins sold in 2009 versus 2008 largely attributed to the increase of distributors in our global distribution network. Distributor sales activities were bolstered by the tremendous brand awareness in the period as a result of the announcement of the discovery of HMS Victory, the launch of "Treasure Quest" on Discovery Channel, and the continued run of SHIPWRECK! Pirates & Treasure (the Company’s traveling attraction) at Science Museum Oklahoma.


Marketing, general and administrative expenses were $2.7 million in 2009 as compared to $3.3 million in 2008. The decrease of $0.6 million was primarily attributable to lower employee-related expenses including contract labor, bonus accruals and share-based compensation.

Operations and research expenses primarily include all costs within the following departments: Archaeology, Conservation, Research, and Marine Operations, which include all vessel operations. Operations and research expenses were $3.0 million in 2009 as compared to $3.8 million in 2008. The $0.8 million decrease was primarily due to lower vessel operating expenses attributable to lower vessel repairs and maintenance.


We have numerous shipwreck projects in various stages of development around the world. In order to protect the identities of the targets of our planned search or recovery operations, in some cases we will defer disclosing specific information relating to our projects until we have located a shipwreck or shipwrecks of interest and determined a course of action to protect our property rights.

Additional information regarding projects discussed herein may be found in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2008. Projects with status updates since this report was filed are discussed below. The company may have other projects in various stages of planning or execution that may not be disclosed for security or legal reasons until considered appropriate by management.

"Atlas" Search Project

The "Atlas" project encompasses a minimum of five high-value targets within a search area covering more than 6,000 square miles. Based on work completed during past "Atlas" seasons, three sites within the "Atlas" search area, including HMS Victory, are the subject of Admiralty arrests filed by Odyssey.

Operations for the 2009 "Atlas" season commenced in February 2009 with the 251’ Odyssey Explorer conducting search and inspection operations. In addition to search and inspection technology used in the past, our teams have integrated new technologies into the ZEUS platform which are expected to enhance inspection capabilities. A JWM Productions camera crew is currently on board the Odyssey Explorer filming activities for an anticipated second season of "Treasure Quest" for Discovery Channel.

The Ocean Alert or other chartered vessels may be utilized for operations during the course of the year as deemed appropriate by management.

HMS Victory Project

We discovered and conducted a preliminary investigation of the shipwreck of Admiral Balchin’s HMS Victory (which sank in 1744) during our 2008 "Atlas" season. HMS Victory was the inspiration and direct predecessor to Nelson’s Victory and was the mightiest and most technically advanced vessel of her age.

Odyssey has been cooperating closely with the UK Ministry of Defence (the "MOD") on the HMS Victory project, and all activities at the site, including the recovery of two bronze cannon, have been conducted in accordance with protocols agreed to by the MOD and Royal Navy officials.

The Victory discovery was announced publicly February 2, 2009 and since that date, various departments within the UK Government have been reviewing data from the site and Odyssey’s proposed agreement to the UK Government for the archaeological excavation of HMS Victory. The proposed agreement is similar to the Odyssey/UK Sussex Partnering Agreement. Research and discussion are ongoing.

Although the UK is not a signatory to the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) Convention for the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage (CPUCH) and therefore not bound by CPUCH, Odyssey’s proposed agreement is consistent with the archaeological principles of CPUCH.

North Carolina Project

Shipwreck exploration firm Intersal Inc. has received a renewal of its exploration permit from the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources for a site off the coast of North Carolina and additional surrounding areas, some of which correlate with Odyssey's "Firefly" shipwreck project. Odyssey has an agreement with Intersal, Inc. to pursue operations under this permit and to share in substantial research and data acquired by Intersal over the years relating to the target shipwreck and the work completed to date in the permit area.

The area covered by this permit and arrest is located near Odyssey's current "Firefly" project, which was acquired by Odyssey from BDJ Discovery Group in 2007 and includes one arrested site that has already produced a small number of gold and silver artifacts. The Intersal site and permit area may also be related to the high-value, Colonial-era merchant vessel believed to be located in the area. The agreements with BDJ and Intersal are similar but separate and the areas do not overlap.

Plans are being developed to resume work in both areas in 2009.

About Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.

Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (NasdaqCM: OMEX) is engaged in the exploration of deep-ocean shipwrecks and uses innovative methods and state-of-the-art technology to conduct extensive search and archaeological recovery operations around the world. Odyssey discovered the Civil War era shipwreck of the SS Republic® in 2003 and recovered over 50,000 coins and 14,000 artifacts from the site nearly 1,700 feet deep. In May 2007, the Company announced the historic deep-ocean treasure recovery of over 500,000 silver and gold coins, weighing 17 tons, from a Colonial era site code-named "Black Swan." In February 2009, Odyssey announced the discovery of Balchin's HMS Victory. The Company also has other shipwreck projects in various stages of development around the world.

Odyssey offers various ways to share in the excitement of deep-ocean exploration by making shipwreck treasures and artifacts available to collectors, the general public and students through its webstore, exhibits, books, television, merchandise, and educational programs.

JWM Productions is currently filming Odyssey’s operations in the "Atlas" search area in preparation of a second season of Discovery Channel’s "Treasure Quest" series. The 12-episode Season One aired in the US and the UK in early 2009 and is scheduled to air worldwide throughout 2009.

Following previous successful engagements in New Orleans, Tampa, and Detroit, Odyssey's SHIPWRECK! Pirates & Treasure exhibit is currently on display at Science Center Oklahoma in Oklahoma City, OK through the end of May 2009 and is scheduled to open at Discovery Place in Charlotte, NC on July 4, 2009. For details on the Company's activities and its commitment to the preservation of maritime heritage please visit

For more detailed information on Odyssey, please contact Natja Igney, Odyssey’s Manager of Corporate Communications, at 813-876-1776.

For consolidated financial statements as well as the full filing please go to .

® SS Republic is a registered trademark of Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.


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, 2008, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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