Ocean Rig Expects to See Strong Cash Flow from mid-2006

The net result for the 2nd Quarter amounted to $ -18.2 million ($ -25.3 million), corresponding to earnings per share of $ -0.10 ($ -0.14), and diluted earnings per share of $ -0.10 ($ -0.14). The operating result for the 2nd Quarter amounted to $ -4.9 million ($ 3.2 million) and EBITDA was $8.3 million ($17.0 million). The 2nd Quarter accounts were affected by approximately 38 days of non-productive time at zero dayrate for Leiv Eiriksson related to the 5 year class certification of the rig. In addition to the class works, critical equipment was overhauled and repaired, resulting in 7 days at zero dayrate. On July 25, Eirik Raude commenced a two-year contract with ExxonMobil. Leiv Eiriksson is expected to complete the current six-well program in August, and will then start the one year extension contract for Total. Both new contracts will be at significantly higher day rates. Ocean Rig therefore expects a strong improvement in cash flows and results over the next quarters. The Executive Chairman, Geir Aune said: "The strongly improved cash flow resulting from the rigs commencement on new contracts this summer will allow us to continue the program for share buy backs and capital repayment." Ocean Rig owns and operates two of the world's largest and most modern drilling rigs, built for ultra deep waters and extreme weather conditions. Leiv Eiriksson is currently operating offshore Angola and Eirik Raude is currently in transit to Canada.
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