Historic Krispy Kreme on Ponce goes up in flames

Atlanta firefighters spent the overnight hours battling a blaze at landmark Krispy Kreme on Ponce De Leon. The Midtown doughnut shop caught fire early Wednesday morning.

Two workers were inside when the blaze broke out.  They smelled smoke, went to the back, and saw fire coming out of the roof. That's when both of them bolted out of the building.  Luckily they both escaped unharmed.

When firefighters arrived they saw flames shooting out of the back of the building.  Knowing that there wasn't anyone inside, the Fire Department used an exterior approach. Multiple ladder trucks dumped water on the fire, putting it out fairly quickly. Fire officials think they managed to save much of the building. 

At this time, the cause of the blaze is unknown.

Dwayne Ivy had just gotten off work as he was driving down Ponce he saw the "hot doughnut" sign. He was getting ready to pull in and pick up a dozen or two when the fire trucks came up behind him. That's when Ivy realized the building was on fire. 

Ivy, who has gotten doughnuts at the shop since he was a kid, told FOX 5 "I'm very disappointed because they do have some great doughnuts."

Krispy Kreme has been serving up doughnut to Atlanta residents for more than 50 years from this location. The company moved into the building in 1965, opening it up as both a production facility and retail shop. 

The famous hot doughnut sign was added in 1992. In 2003 the store was remodeled to look like an old-style diner.

In 2016, N.B.A. Hall of Famer Shaquille O'Neal bought the store when he became a Krispy Kreme spokesperson.

In a statement, Krispy Kreme and O'Neal said they were thankful that no one was hurt and that fire department responded so quickly.

"We are working with authorities to assess the damage and are uncertain at this point how long the shop will be closed," a spokesperson said. "However, we plan to reopen the shop as soon as possible!"

The company will continue to pay all employees at the store while it works to get them employment at other stores in the area.

WATCH: FOX 5 Atlanta live news coverage

Download the FOX 5 Atlanta app for breaking news and weather alerts.