In contrast with earlier reports, Russia’s biggest sporting goods retailer managed to avoid the threatened elimination of nearly 2,000 jobs from its payroll because of the retail lockdown introduced in Russia to slow down the spread of Covid-19. Roughly 1,800 Sportmaster employees found temporary jobs with some major Russian food retailers, which were allowed to stay open. Another 200 employees who were working in the temporarily closed stores were transferred to Sportmaster’s distribution and delivery departments or to the its call center. The lockdown required Sportmaster to completely rebuild its logistics network, as the number of orders received through its online store increased tenfold and more than 100 physical stores were converted into pick-up points, the company reported. In total, Sportmaster stores had 14,000 employees before the introduction of the retail lockdown. Those who were not able to find a temporary job have continued to get some fixed payments from Sportmaster, a company executive said, without providing any further details. Sportmaster has 453 stores in Russia, only 45 of which were operating as of mid-May – primarily in the regions which recently began softening their quarantine restrictions.