Brazilian football club Corinthians is prematurely ending its record-breaking sponsorship agreement with Vai de Bet after only six months into the deal. 

Corinthians announced last Friday (7 June) after the betting operator was accused of alleged money laundering which is being investigated by the Civil Police of São Paulo. 

An official Corinthians club statement read: “Corinthians regrets that the trading partner has closed the largest sports marketing agreement in Brazil – from which the company benefited to the point of leaving an unknown bookmaker to second place in the sector in just five months – without there being any conclusion of the investigations related to the intermediary of the negotiation.” 

SBC Noticias noted that the club is working with relevant authorities and is “most interested in solving the issue”, with the club stating it is “not measuring efforts for the facts to be elucidated”. 

The São Paulo team inked the initial three-year deal with Vai de Bet last January in what was the most lucrative sponsorship deal in Brazilian football, earning the club R$370m (£60m) across the entirety of the contract length. 

Vai de Bet featured on the club’s men’s and women’s shirts for the current 2024 season, but now the contract has been terminated, it is expected that the branding of the betting operator will be removed from the teams’ shirts. 

The investigation into Vai de Bet stems from an initial process which began on 27 May and includes questioning into the sponsorship deal between the operator and Corinthians. 

In addition, the Police Department for the Protection of Citizenship (DPPC) opened the case to investigate a possible indirect relationship with another case that is being investigated involving Corinthians.

The delegate heading the case, Tiago Fernando Correia, stated: “In this preliminary phase, we are already going to make investigations. 

“Let’s find out who Neoway’s partners are, let’s go to the headquarters of this company. We want to know who actually brokered the contract. We want to hear Cassundé. We will contact Edna (owner of Neoway).”

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