Pippo Baudo, the veteran Italian TV presenter who was recently appointed artistic director for the Sanremo Festival, has resigned from the post.

Pippo Baudo, the veteran Italian TV presenter who was recently appointed artistic director for the Sanremo Festival, has resigned from the post. The news comes only days after industry body FIMI announced that its members would take part in the forthcoming festival. FIMI had stayed away in 2004, due to a dispute with state-owned RAI television over expenses owed from the previous edition.

Baudo is credited with having played an important role in healing rifts between RAI and FIMI. He had succeeded singer-songwriter Tony Renis, who directed the 2004 edition. In a statement, Baudo cites "artistic differences" with RAI management for his departure.

Presenter Paolo Bonolis is expected to succeed Baudo. Bonolis was originally meant to present the five-night show, which is due to be held in early March.