Giorgio Assumma, president of the Italian authors' and publishers' collecting society SIAE, has resigned, almost two years before the end of his mandate.

No official reasons have been given for his decision, which became effective on Nov. 30.

But in a statement published on the SIAE website, director-general Gaetano Blandini says: "Without wishing to discuss the reasons for the president's decision to resign, I feel the need to thank him deeply, on behalf of all my colleagues, for all the passion, commitment, dedication and intelligence with which he has fulfilled this delicate and complex role over the last five years.

"I like to think that, in such a delicate moment for the life of this organization, his resignation is an act of noble responsibility and love towards SIAE. In wishing Giorgio Assumma all the best for the future in both his personal and professional life, I am sure he will continue to offer us his authoritative, precious and wise advice. Thank you, dear President."

In a separate statement, Assumma thanked his colleagues for their support over the last five years, saying that the "experience has not been easy, but it has certainly been fervent and thrilling."

Assumma's presidency came under pressure in 2009 but the 64-member representative assembly voted to renew it in November of that year. In the summer of 2009, a large number of delegates -- representing both independent and major publishing interests - at a SIAE assembly staged a walk-out in protest against the management.

The dissident elements within SIAE had claimed the body has failed to distribute revenue sufficiently quickly and to gather digital revenue efficiently.