Police are investigating an arson of Asian online distribution office in central Hamilton.

Waikato fire safety officer Kevin Holmes said if it wasn't for an eagle-eyed security officer doing a patrol, the damage to the Anglesea St building could have been a lot worse.

The fire had got so intense that it burned a metre-square hole through the floor, burning the joist and getting into the hardy plank.

It appeared those responsible had grabbed a heap of boxes from the company's recycling bin and lit them before piling on several wooden pellets.

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The fire service was called to the fire about 12.30am, he said.

The Waikato Security staffer was standing at the corner of Harwood and Rostrevor and could see the smoke shooting straight up into the air.

The premises has an alleyway which comes out at Vialou St, a possible escape route for the arsonists.

Holmes said it's the third suspicious fire on the street in five years, with the first two occurring at AH Franks Tyres, the second of which completely destroyed it.

024U NZ Ltd owner Jill Wu is gutted by the blaze but was pleased that the fire brigade was able to get there early enough to save the stock inside, which ranges from sheepskins and manuka honey to deer pizzle (dried deer penis).

The fire came excruciatingly close to burning through the hardy plank and into the interior of the building. Photo/Belinda Feek
The fire came excruciatingly close to burning through the hardy plank and into the interior of the building. Photo/Belinda Feek

Wu said she believes it's the work of an arsonist given the earlier fires about 200m down the road.

"Because they used a lot of cardboard. My cardboard bin was almost full and was about to be taken away.

However, she doesn't believe the homeless people, who had been regularly sleeping on her back deck, would have carried out such a callous act.

"I don't know. It's just horrible. I know it happens to a lot of businesses in town."

Disappointingly, the fire wasn't a surprise, she said.

"Every year we have someone throw a rock through a window, so it's not unexpected. Something always happens in town, but I never expect that it would be fire because I have been pretty good to neighbours or not pissed off anyone, even the homeless people. I didn't really deal with them."

Firefighters had to smash through the wall make sure the fire was completely out, leaving a trail of jib inside. Photo/Belinda Feek
Firefighters had to smash through the wall make sure the fire was completely out, leaving a trail of jib inside. Photo/Belinda Feek

City Safe staff had kicked out a homeless person from the deck last week.

She wanted to see a CCTV camera installed in the area. Neighbouring business The Toolshed was also the victim of two ram raids earlier this year.

There's a slight odour of smoke inside the building.

Most of her product has survived except about 30 boxes, worth about $300 each, of manuka honey blend which bordered the burned area which she would possibly have to throw away.