Saints might have witnessed the departures of props Soane Tonga'huia and Brian Mujati to big-spending Racing Metro 92, and the likes of Paul Doran Jones, Ryan Lamb and Noah Cato to Harlequins, Leicester Tigers and Newcastle Falcons respectively, but they have managed to strengthen their squad with several top-quality signings.
George North and Alex Corbisiero, who both starred in the British and Irish Lions test series victory in Australia, have joined from Scarlets and London Irish, while the influential Samoan scrum-half, Kahn Fotuali'i, will face his former Ospreys teammates during next season's pool stage.
Leinster, who last season added the Amlin Challenge Cup to their three Heineken Cup titles, have signed the Springbok and Blue Bulls full-back, Zane Kirchner, and Ireland and Connacht Rugby second row, Mike McCarthy, with the high-scoring Jimmy Gopperth also moving to Dublin from the Newcastle Falcons.
The additions have been offset by the departure of their outstanding playmaker, Jonny Sexton, to Racing Metro, and of the superbly consistent Isa Nacewa who has decided to hang up his boots at the age of 30.
The Ospreys have moved to shore up the gap left by the departure of Fotuali'i by bringing in Italian international scrum half, Tito Tebaldi, from Zebre Rugby while Castres Olympique's main signing has been the hugely talented Richie Gray who moves from Sale Sharks.