Pucillo, a former basketball star at North Carolina State University, owns and operates Lou Pucillo, Inc., a liquor brokerage firm. He and his four salesmen sell exclusively to the state's ABC stores. In 1976, his first year of operation, he sold 250,000 cases, and in 1985 sales had increased to 600,000 cases. North Carolina does not buy liquor in a central location, having instead 145 buying units. There are twelve other brokers with sales staff in the state competing with Pucillo, who works solely on commission.