Ocean Rig Enjoys Strong First Quarter

Continued focus on operational performance and improved cost efficiency resulted in an EBITDA of US $11.8 million, after adjustment for US $2.5 million internal profit related to Ocean Rig's equity participation in the Weymouth well, reflecting the best ever operational quarter for Ocean Rig. This, combined with a strong improvement in the deepwater drilling market, indicates a good potential for improved earnings going forward.

Ocean Rig changed its functional currency and reporting currency from NOK to USD with effect from January 1st, 2004.

EBITDA for the first quarter was US $11.8 mill (US $13.5 million), operating profit was US $ -0.2 million (US $ -181.3 million including a write down of Eirik Raude of US $183.7 million) and net profit was US $ -14.7 million (US $ -131.5 million). Results are reduced by US $2.5 million representing internal profit resulting from the company's participation in the Weymouth well. Without this reduction, the 1st quarter 2004 EBITDA would have been US $14.3 million, the best quarter EBITDA ever recorded for the company.

The first quarter earnings efficiency ratio for Eirik Raude was close to 100% compared to 82% in the same period in 2003. The earnings efficiency ratio for Leiv Eiriksson was 97 % (excluding 6 days off hire at the end of March), compared to 82% in the same period in 2003.

The Executive Chairman said: "The last contract award for the Barents Sea campaign put Ocean Rig as a leader of the harsh environment market. Due to the current short contract obligations, the company is in an excellent position to benefit from continuing improvement in market conditions."

Ocean Rig owns and operates two of the worlds largest and most modern drilling-rigs, built for ultra deep waters and extreme weather conditions. The units are currently operating in Angola and off the east coast of Canada.

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