Agencies received RFIs last week and initial meetings are expected next week.
The pitch has been called as part of a consolidation exercise. The company employs a number of regional agencies to work on specific local briefs, but is now looking for a single network agency to handle its entire account. The winning agency will handle all of the Lindt & Sprungli brands, which include the main Lindt brand, the Excellence range, Gold Bunny, Les Grande and Chocoletti.
The decision to pitch comes a month after the German-owned chocolate manufacturer signed up the Swiss Wimbledon tennis champion Roger Federer as its global brand ambassador - the first time it has hired a spokesman since its launch 160 years ago.
The tennis ace's first work is expected to be a print campaign promoting the Les Grande brand, which claims to have a higher percentage of nuts than any other chocolate.
In the UK, the last above-the-line agency to handle the business was Grey London, which resigned the account in 2008.
Grey picked up the work in January 2007 following a final shoot-out against Leo Burnett. The pitch was handled by The Haystack Group.