Trico Marine Reports 2002 and 4Q Results

Tuesday, February 18, 2003
Trico Marine Services, Inc. announced a net loss for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2002 of $14.4 million, or $(0.40) per share (diluted), after an extraordinary item, on revenues of $35.2 million. The net loss for the 2002 fourth quarter includes an extraordinary charge of $102,000 resulting from the early extinguishment of debt and a non-cash charge of $5.2 million due to an asset write-down. This compares to a net loss of $884,000, or $(0.02) per share (diluted), on revenues of $41.7 million for the fourth quarter last year.

The non-cash charge of $5.2 million is due to the write-down of the book value of two vessels. The Company stated these vessels are special-purpose towing vessels, with limited capabilities as conventional supply vessels. The write down was in response to market conditions for these vessels.

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2002, the Company reported a net loss of $68.0 million, or $(1.87) per share (diluted), after extraordinary items, on revenues of $133.9 million. The loss for 2002 includes non-cash charges totaling $27.9 million, and extraordinary items of $11.0 million. The non-cash charge of $27.9 million in 2002 is due to the previously announced establishment of a $22.7 million valuation allowance against the Company's deferred tax assets, and the $5.2 million asset write-down. The extraordinary item of $11.0 million is due to the early retirement of debt, including the retirement of the Company's 8 1/2% senior notes. This compares to a net loss of approximately $6.9 million, or $(0.19) per share (diluted), on revenues of $182.6 million for 2001. The net loss for 2001 includes a non-cash charge of $24.3 million, before taxes, due to the write-down of the book value of eight vessels.

Since establishing the above-noted deferred tax asset valuation allowance, the Company has not recognized for financial reporting purposes any tax benefits from its operating loss. Day rates for the Company's Gulf class supply boats averaged $5,177 with utilization of 56% in the fourth quarter 2002, compared to $6,568 with utilization of 59% in the fourth quarter last year. North Sea day rates averaged $12,483 with utilization of 86% in the fourth quarter of 2002, compared to $13,127 with utilization of 92% for the 2001 fourth quarter. Crew and line handlers averaged $2,600 with utilization of 74% in the fourth quarter of 2002 compared to $2,812 with utilization of 74% in the fourth quarter last year. Direct vessel operating expenses increased in the fourth quarter 2002 to $22.4 million, compared to $20.7 million for the fourth quarter 2001, due primarily to the addition of two new platform supply vessels and two new crew boats in 2002, increases in labor costs and insurance expenses, and the decline of the U.S. dollar versus the Norwegian Kroner.

"We continue to see low utilization of our fleet in the Gulf of Mexico. We are however pleased with our ability to maintain prices through this difficult market and are optimistic about our prospects later in 2003 due to strong commodity prices, and our intention to increase our presence in international markets," said Thomas E. Fairley, President and Chief Executive Officer. "We experienced the traditional seasonal slowdown in the North Sea towards the end of the quarter and anticipate it continuing through the first quarter of 2003. We do however believe activity will rebound later this year as more rigs go to work and as the construction season begins in the North Sea. In the fourth quarter, we took delivery of the second of two new PSVs we built in the North Sea and two of the three new deepwater crew boats. The third and final crew boat should commence operations in March 2003," added Fairley.

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