Ex-Liberal MP firm awarded $237M ventilator contract, gifted with $100M Overpayment

Written By Karl Fluri, Posted on October 22, 2020

A Journal de Montreal investigative report released yesterday revealed that, in the early days of the pandemic, the Trudeau government provided a contract for ventilators worth almost a quarter billion dollars to FTI Professional Grade, a 7 day old firm with only 2 known employees. 

In March, the government realized that it was in a position where they may be critically low on the required medical equipment to get them through this pandemic. This lead to an emergency call for this medical equipment to all Canadian manufacturers.

At that time the group Ventilators for Canadians started work with the government to provide them with the necessary equipment, rather than the government putting out an open bid.

Rick Jamieson, one of the members of this group and owner of FTI Professional Grade, was awarded the contract. Jamieson has no medical expertise whatsoever and works in the automotive sector. The manufacturing of 10,000 ventilators was then subcontracted by FTI to Baylis Medical, a company chaired by Ex-Liberal MP and known acquaintance of Justin Trudeau, Frank Baylis. 


Baylis served one term from 2015-2019 as MP for the riding of Pierrefonds-Dollard, and did not seek reelection after he missed a motion he was proposing to reform rules in the house. Baylis is known to be a generous donor to the Liberal Party. 

For many, this type of contract sourced to a firm whose owners have close ties to the Liberals may bring to mind the WE Charity, still very much on the mind of parliamentarians, which almost led to an early election this week.

Just as with the previous, the current contract does raise quite a few questions. 

The ventilators, manufactured in Mississauga Ontario, were based on the Medtronic models widely used and recreated around the world. The units were then sold to Ottawa at a cost of $23,700 per unit. Medtronic units on the other hand are sold at $13,700 per unit, meaning the government is overpaying $10,000 per unit. On 10,000 units this means a total of 100 million dollars. 

A Department of Health memo mentioned that the ventilators, the VFC-560, are new and had not been approved in any jurisdiction to date. Other manufacturers, such as Vietnam’s Vingroup, also manufacture units based on the Medtronic model, yet those sell for approximately $9,200 CAD.

Contracts given to Baylis’ firm amounted to around $696K of taxpayer money: $273,237 for the medical contract itself, as well as $422,946 for an additional Department of Industry research contract.

The Trudeau government has been spending money faster than anyone can vet where it is going. This is why members of the Conservatives, NDP, and Bloc Quebecois are pushing to create a special committee to look into the pandemic spending, as well as the conflict of interest issues which seem to be growing in numbers. 

Yesterday, the creation of an anti-corruption committee was thwarted by the Trudeau government as Canadians were threatened with an election during the pandemic.


The Conservatives have now proposed another motion to set up a committee to investigate the pandemic spending.

The Bloc Quebecois and the NDP have already stated that they will be voting in support of the motion, essentially warning Liberals that, if they were to call this motion a confidence vote, they will be the ones forcing an election.

The Liberals have stated they are considering making this a confidence vote, meaning Canadians are not out of the woods yet and might be heading to the polls after the vote on Monday.

Karl Fluri

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