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Mohed Altrad's withdraws proposed investment in Gloucester

Montpellier's rugby union club President Mohed Altrad during a Top 14 game. PASCAL GUYOT/AFP/Getty Images

Mohed Altrad has withdrawn his proposed investment in Gloucester after Premier League Rugby voted to restrict his holding to a maximum 20%.

The Syria-born businessman, who owns French side Montpellier, wanted to take control of a 45% interest but a PRL board meeting vetoed that and set the limit at less than half, following the lead of France's Ligue Nationale de Rugby.

With the critical decisions made in advance of the next European Professional Club Rugby meeting, Altrad has withdrawn completely.

"Whilst this news is extremely disappointing for Gloucester Rugby club and myself, rugby more generally is the biggest loser," he said in a statement.

"Our vision was to support an English club, facilitate investment in junior and senior players as well as coaching staff and improve its training and playing facilities.

"The wider benefits were obvious: a stronger club at both English and European level which would have generated more interest in the sport; investment in English qualified players to support the RFU on the international scene and, more widely, a sign to potential investors that European rugby was entrepreneurial, ambitious and open for business."