TAMPA, Fla., May 10, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (NASDAQ:OMEX), a pioneer in the field of deep-ocean exploration, reported results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2018, and provided an update on current projects.
“Our first quarter results continue to demonstrate our focus on improving operational efficiencies as a strong foundation for our transformation. We have successfully built a new business model with more stability and less risk while utilizing our world-class capabilities,” said Mark Gordon, Odyssey Chief Executive Officer and President. “As we have communicated in the past, our plan has two key focus areas which are developing valuable seafloor mineral assets for our company and generating leveraged returns by conducting contracted work for third-parties that provide cash and equity or profit sharing stakes.
“We have seen significant progress in both key focus areas in 2018. We recently received positive news from the Mexican Federal Court on the ‘Don Diego’ project and we’re looking forward to working with Mexican authorities to develop this strategic resource for the benefit of Mexico. While we work through this process, we’re currently participating in the development of two additional strategic mineral resource deposits. One is an Odyssey mineral project. The other is a new project being conducted under contract from which Odyssey will receive cash and equity in the venture. And, as previously reported, offshore operations continue on a deep-ocean project in which we have a significant back-end interest.
“Concurrent with our active marine operations and mineral programs, our team continues to develop a portfolio of diversified high-potential mineral projects that we expect will create significant future value for our shareholders and company. The current projects and developing pipeline of long-term programs, combined with our improved operations efficiencies, exemplify the ongoing transformation of our business in a positive and demonstrable manner.”
Odyssey’s Current Projects
Currently planned or operational shipwreck and mineral projects are conducted under leveraged contract models whereby Odyssey is paid to perform services while retaining a significant back-end share of the future net proceeds from these projects or an equity ownership share of the project. The combined potential cash flows from these projects are expected to fund operations for multiple years while simultaneously increasing the value of projects in which the company has an equity ownership position.
Offshore operations are currently underway on a contracted project that is expected to begin generating cash in 2018 to fund company operations and is forecast to produce cash returns for a minimum 12-18 months.
Two additional strategic mineral deposits are currently under development. One is an Odyssey mineral project and the other is being conducted under contract with Odyssey receiving cash and equity in the new venture.
To move to the next phase of the “Don Diego” phosphate sands project in Mexico, Odyssey and its subsidiaries are awaiting the issuance of an environmental permit. On March 21, 2018, the 11-judge panel of the Superior Court of the Federal Court of Administrative Justice in Mexico ruled unanimously in favor of Odyssey’s subsidiary, Exploraciones Oceánicas, S. de R.L. de C.V. (“ExO”), nullifying the original denial of the environmental permit application. Odyssey is under contract to provide a variety of services related to this the project once approvals are in place. This contract has the potential to produce positive cashflows and enhance the value of Odyssey’s investment in this project.
Several other new subsea mineral projects that will require offshore exploration work and resource evaluation by Odyssey are currently in development stage.
First Quarter 2018 Financial Results
Total revenue in the current quarter was $0.5 million, a $0.1 million decrease over the revenue in the same period a year ago. The revenue generated in each period was a result of performing marine search and recovery operations for our related party customer Magellan.
Marketing, general and administrative expenses decreased by $0.2 million from $1.6 million in 2017 to $1.4 million in 2018 primarily as a result of (i) a reduction of $0.1 million of personnel compensation and related expenses which includes share-based compensation and (ii) a $0.1 million decrease in independent director meeting fees.
Operations and research expenses decreased by $0.3 million from 2017 to 2018 primarily as a result of a $0.3 million reduction of marine services costs which include technical crew costs as well as other marine operational costs such as equipment rental, fuel, port fees and consumables. The net loss for first quarter 2018 was $1.7 million or $(0.21) per share, as compared to a net loss of $2.2 million or $(0.28) per share in first quarter 2017.
Consolidated financial statements as well as Odyssey's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended March 31, 2018, are available on the company's website at www.odysseymarine.com as well as at www.sec.gov.
About Odyssey Marine Exploration
Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (Nasdaq:OMEX) is engaged in deep-ocean exploration using innovative methods and state-of-the-art technology to provide access to critical resources worldwide. Our core focus is the discovery, development and extraction of deep-ocean minerals. Odyssey also provides marine services for private clients and governments. For additional details, please visit www.odysseymarine.com.
Forward Looking Information
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, 2017, which was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 26, 2018. The financial and operating projections as well as estimates of mining assets are based solely on the assumptions developed by Odyssey that it believes are reasonable based upon information available to Odyssey as of the date of this release. All projections and estimates are subject to material uncertainties, and should not be viewed as a prediction or an assurance of actual future performance. The validity and accuracy of Odyssey's projections will depend upon unpredictable future events, many of which are beyond Odyssey's control and, accordingly, no assurance can be given that Odyssey's assumptions will prove true or that its projected results will be achieved.
Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) permits mining companies, in their filings with the SEC, to disclose only those mineral deposits that a company can economically and legally extract or produce. We use certain terms in this press release, such as "measured", "indicated," "inferred" and "resources," which the SEC guidelines strictly prohibit us from including in our filings with the SEC. "Inferred mineral resources" have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher category. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that part or all of the inferred mineral resource exists, or is economically or legally mineable, and are urged to consider closely the disclosures in our Form 10-K which may be secured from us or from the SEC's website at http://www.sec.gov/edgar.shtml.
Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.
(813) 876-1776 x 2562
Source: Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc.