GATE was founded in 1960 by Herbert H. Peyton in Jacksonville, Florida. Mr. Peyton opened his first gas station that year and expanded rapidly throughout eight southeastern states.
In 1972 the energy crises motivated management to consider diversifying the business beyond service stations. GATE began acquiring concrete plants, real estate for development and hospitality properties. The name "GATE" was derived from a 1960's chamber slogan -- "Jacksonville: A Gateway to Florida".