As 'Duck Dynasty' returns to TV, merchandisers cash in

Television personalities, left to right, Si Robertson, Willie Robertson and Phil Robertson from A&E Television Networks' "Duck Dynasty."
Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

"Duck Dynasty" returns to A&E Wednesday night for the start of its fifth season just weeks after its star, Phil Robertson was briefly suspended after comments he made about homosexuality and African Americans. A&E reversed that decision after a week-long suspension, and now the Robertson family will continue to cash in not just on TV and from their family business, Duck Commander, but also from a massive and growing licensing business.

The show's brand has become a merchandising phenomenon with about $400 million in retail sales in 2013. About 80 licensees produce roughly 1,200 products that include DVDs, clothing, action figures, and even wine.

Not only is it big business for the Robertson family and A&E, but retailers make huge profits of the show's merchandise sales.