Allianz has terminated its multi-millions poun sponsorship deal with Saracens in the latest blow to the English and European club champions.
The insurance giant has been Saracens' principal sponsor since 2012, with its contract due to end in 2021, but the German company has decided to end the deal early after the club was relegated for persistent breaches of salary cap rules.
The deal, believed to be worth £2million-a-year to Sarries was originally a perfect fit for Allianz in their goal of building its brand by being associated with leading sports groups and organisations.
During the course of their deal, Saracens won the English Premiership four times and the European Champions Cup three times.
However, last November, the club was fined £5.4m and docked 35 points after a series of co-investments that its owner and former chairman Nigel Wray made with high-profile players were found to have breached regulations that limit payments to players.
Saracens apologised "unreservedly" for their continued salary cap breaches last January and agreed to the punishment of relegation from Premiership Rugby.
Amid Saracens' acceptance of their breaches, Allianz had responded by saying it is a company that acts "with transparency and integrity" and that it would hold talks with Saracens "to confirm this shared understanding and commitment going forward."
The move will be another financial blow for Saracens, with uncertainty over which star players will stay and play for the club in English rugby's second tier next season.