Odyssey Marine Soars on Shipwreck Exploration Takeover (OMEX)

Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (NASDAQ: OMEX) has taken over a shipwreck site and it will pay out a 15% post-expense royalty for future findings.  It was named the sole plaintiff in the in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina after a U.S. District Judge granted the Joint Motion from Odyssey Marine Exploration and BDJ Discovery Group, LLC for “Substitution of Plaintiff.”

BDJ Discovery Group filed the original arrest action in 2005 against the Unidentified Shipwreck Vessel, its apparel, tackle, appurtenances and cargo located in the waters of the Atlantic Ocean approximately 12 miles off the coast of North Carolina.  Odyssey has been conducting surveys and inspections in the area and on the arrested site since August 2007.  It is currently planning the next stages of survey and archaeological investigation of the site.

BDJ Discovery Group is the company that originally discovered evidence of the site, brought the project to Odyssey in 2007 and an agreement was reached for Odyssey to take over all aspects of the project. BDJ has assigned all of its rights to the artifacts and any wreck from which they originate to Odyssey in return for up to 15% of any proceeds from artifact sales after archaeological excavation, conservation, marketing and certain other expenses.

This lists a small number of gold and silver artifacts among other items in what it calls the “Firefly” site, although this site remains unidentified.  Shares of Odyssey Marine are actually up 9% at $5.50 after this announcement, although the 52-week range is $2.70 to $9.45.  Investors will probably hoping this treasure has no Spanish ship attached to it that the Spaniards can try to go after.

“So son, tell me what you want to be when you grow up…..”
“Dad, I want to be a treasure hunter.” 
Son, really.  What do you want to be?”
“I told you, a treasure hunter.”

Jon C. Ogg
February 25, 2008