Parker Drilling Reports Solid Earnings Improvement in First Quarter

Parker Drilling Company (NYSE: PKD) reported net income of $3.9 million, or $0.04 per share, on revenues of $120.2 million for the first quarter ended March 31, 2005, compared to a net loss of $4.9 million or $0.05 per share on revenues of $90.9 million for the first quarter of 2004. The first quarter of 2005 included certain non-routine items that negatively impacted earnings by $0.01 per share. The non-routine items included the premium paid on debt extinguishment, expense related to the vesting of restricted shares partially offset by the change in fair value of derivatives.

The average utilization of international land rigs for the first quarter of 2005 was 67 percent, which is a significant improvement to the 46 percent reported for the first quarter of 2004. Current utilization is 76 percent for international land rigs. Average utilization of Parker Drilling's Gulf of Mexico barge rigs for the first quarter of 2005 was 77 percent, which is an increase from the 62 percent reported for the first quarter of 2004. Dayrates on Gulf of Mexico barges increased an average of 24 percent for the first quarter of 2005 compared to the same period of the prior year. A portion of the change in utilization for the Gulf of Mexico was due to the transfer of the idle barge rig 72 from Nigeria to the Gulf of Mexico. The rig was refurbished during the first quarter and began work on a new contract last week. Current utilization is 79 percent for Gulf of Mexico barge rigs.

"This quarter marks the first time we have reported net income since 2001. This return to profitability is the result of our ongoing restructuring of our balance sheet and asset focus. Our improved earnings are due to continued strong utilization enhanced by increasing dayrates in our Gulf of Mexico barge fleet, strong performance from our premium rental tools business, Quail Tools, and reduced interest expense. In addition to the positive earnings for the quarter, we generated sufficient cash to increase the call for redemption on April 21, 2005 of our 10 1/8% Senior Notes to $65 million, by approximately $9.5 million above the proceeds from the add-on financing to our 9 5/8% Senior Notes," said Bobby Parker, president and chief executive officer.

Capital expenditures for the three months ended March 31, 2005, were $12.6 million. Total debt was $456.0 million at March 31, 2005, and the Company's cash balance was $66.3 million.
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