Published on August 6, 2014

TBC, Harris Tire to sell 'Duck Dynasty'-inspired tire lines

Harris Tire Co. photo
The patriarchs of the Robertson clan — Willie, Phil, Silas and Jase — in their first promo for the Duck Commander line of tires.

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (Aug. 6, 2014) — Heads up, all you “Duck Dynasty” fans: TBC Corp. and wholesaler Harris Tire Co. will introduce two exclusive Duck Commander-branded all-terrain light truck tire lines for the replacement market in the third quarter.

The Duck Commander All-Terrain and Duck Commander Mud Terrain lines are the first tires to carry the iconic Duck Commander stamp and brand name seen in the reality TV show “Duck Dynasty” on A&E Television Networks L.L.C.

“This is the first endeavor that TBC has ever had working with a licensing model, such as a Duck Dynasty or anybody else, to promote a brand other than ours,” Marty Krcelic, executive vice president of sales for TBC Brands, told Tire Business.

“Everything the Duck Dynasty folks do and all the products they sell and put their name on and all the marketing appeal they have to their population of customers really tied in to our industry.

“We thought, ‘What better way to capitalize on a different marketing opportunity than to tie into the Duck Dynasty success and some of the other things they are doing with a tire line?’”

The two tire lines are designed to appeal to the demographic that affiliates with the recreational outdoor community, Jon Vance, senior director of marketing for TBC Wholesale, told Tire Business. 

The tire sidewalls won’t feature the famously bearded images of Duck Dynasty’s Robertson family, but the Mud Terrain tires will be emblazoned with a duck feather design coming down out of the tread area onto the sidewall right above the “Duck Commander” white lettering and the official Duck Commander badge.

“I think that’s going to have a lot of appeal not only for the folks that follow the brand but also the recreational enthusiast community,” Mr. Vance said.  

Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. is manufacturing the tires, which will feature “by Cooper” on the sidewall even though it is not a Cooper brand, Mr. Krcelic said.

Thirty-one sizes for a wide variety of SUVs, Jeeps and pickup trucks will be available by October, he said. More sizes will be added as needed, Mr. Vance said.

“We feel like the brand has longevity, the tires have longevity. Even notwithstanding the direct tie-in with the reality show, the brand existed before and it will exist after. People are always going to go outside and hunt. People are always going to want cool tires to have on their cars.

“So this is not a limited edition; this is a new product for us and Harris Tire that we’re going to support vigorously,” he said.

The venture evolved over the past nine months until Harris Tire reached a licensing agreement with the Robertson family — stars of “Duck Dynasty” and proprietors of the Duck Commander brand — to be the exclusive distributor of the lines in the Southeast. The company is partnering with TBC Brands to distribute the lines throughout the rest of North America.

“When Harris first approached us about this venture, we were very excited about the special opportunities this project would create for both tire dealers and consumers — especially recreational and off-road enthusiasts,” Mr. Krcelic said, “The Duck Commander tires will add a sense of fun and adventure to any vehicle and we are very happy to be the co-distributor of them with our friends at Harris Tire.”

“What started as a casual conversation with the Duck Commander patriarch, Phil Robertson, quickly became a reality once TBC signed onto the project. We are very proud of this new partnership and look forward to making these tires accessible to everyone throughout North America,” said Ken Harris Jr., president of Harris Tire.

“These new tire lines go hand-in-hand with Duck Commander’s existing relationships with NASCAR and LINE-X. And the use of the Duck Commander brand will be a unique and fresh endeavor in the independent tire market, offering a quality product with a globally recognizable brand name manufactured domestically by Cooper Tire & Rubber Co.”

 

The family business sponsors a 500-mile NASCAR race annually at Texas Motor Speedway, the "Duck Commander 500," and is the corporate sponsor of the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, La., through 2019.

The All-Terrain line will be offered in 16 sizes, in rim diameters ranging from 15 to 18 inches. The Mud Terrain will be available in 15 sizes in 16- to 20-inch rim diameters.

TBC will be providing support through point-of-sale materials and social media. A tire label will feature images of the Robertson family, Mr. Vance said.

The company also will be providing 12 sets of the tires annually to the Robertsons for their vehicles, and while it would be a promotional coup for them to show the tires on their TV program, Mr. Krcelic said there is no guarantee that will happen.

Harris Tire is a wholesale distributer based in Troy, Ala., with six locations across the southeast. The company distributes to Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Louisiana, and Tennessee.

Duck Commander is a family-owned and -operated business that was established in 1972 by Phil Robertson and is based in West Monroe, La. The company began as a duck call manufacturer and has since expanded into other product lines, including Duck Commander duck-hunting merchandise, Buck Commander deer-hunting merchandise and Duck Commander Family Foods.

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To reach this reporter: kmccarron@crain.com; 330-865-6127. Twitter — @kmcarr

 

 

 

 

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