3 Pitch Swiss Army

NEW YORK Three agencies are contending for a new global creative assignment from Victorinox Swiss Army, a company representative has confirmed.

Billings were not disclosed, but sources expect media spending for the assignment to approach $40 million. Final presentations took place in the past two weeks, and a decision is expected shortly.

The rep declined to identify the finalists or discuss spending.

In addition to its namesake pocketknife, the Ibach, Switzerland-based Swiss Army manufactures watches, apparel, cutlery and travel gear.

The client’s past global media spending has been relatively modest — $8 million last year and $10 million in 2006, according to Nielsen Global AdView and Nielsen Monitor-Plus. More than half of last year’s total ($5 million) was in the U.S., per Nielsen. That figure does not include online spending.

The company does not have a lead creative agency in the U.S. Rather, its in-house creative team works with consultants to produce work, the rep said.

In the past, Swiss Army used shops such as IPG’s Mullen in Wenham, Mass., and independent Foundation in Seattle for creative duties.

ASI, an independent in Stamford, Conn., handles U.S. media chores for the client. That shop will handle North American media duties on the global assignment, according to the rep. Swiss Army has yet to determine what company will handle overseas buying. Swiss Army’s U.S. headquarters is located in Monroe, Conn.