Guest - Outland Denim


Topics of the interview

00:00 Presentation

00:20 Could you please tell us more about yourself and the company Outland Denim?

01:52 Where are you producing this product and which is a community you are working on and supporting?

02:26 What’s the real mission and vision?

03:39 How do you first of all find these people that need help in Cambodia?

06:20 What is the thing they need they really have?

08:55 What is the role of women in Cambodia today?

11:05 Why are you a profit company and not an no profit company?

15:38 The importance of the community to support the initiatives of a brand

19:08 What’s the role in your company of transparency?

20:28 Three best practises you would like to share with the other companies?

22:36 Three things you have learned to avoid becoming a b-corp?

26:18 What changes would you like to see the fashion industry next few years and what changes do you think will be possible in the next few years?

Outland Denim: Pioneering Socially Conscious Manufacturing in Fashion

How to achieve a concrete social change? A sustainable career path is the best solution? We’ve discussed about it with James Bartle, CEO at Outland Denim, a premium denim jeans designed to bring the worlds of its seamstresses and its customers closer together. Every button, rivet, and stitch is carefully selected by its designers with intention to minimize impact on the environment and to mitigate the risk of exploitation in its supply chain.

The Mission of Outland Denim

Outland Denim’s mission is to combat social injustice and environmental degradation through the fashion industry. The company employs women who have been vulnerable or exploited, offering them opportunities to create a different future. This starts with living wages and extends to training and education in denim making. This approach has shown to significantly impact individuals, families, and communities.

Production and Community Impact

The company, based in Australia, operates two manufacturing facilities in Cambodia. This region was chosen for its high poverty levels and the opportunity to effect social change through enterprises like Outland Denim. The company’s ultimate goal is to create a cycle of freedom for humanity, encouraging the fashion industry to become a solution rather than a problem.

Addressing Supply Chain Challenges

Outland Denim works with non-government organizations to identify and support women who have been exploited. The company focuses on collecting data to observe the impact of their business model, ensuring that employment with Outland Denim leads to significant life changes. This includes offering education in literacy, language, and women’s health, alongside skill development in denim making.

The Role of Women in Cambodia

The role of women in Cambodia, and globally, is crucial for family and community success. Outland Denim’s focus on employing women stems from the understanding that women are more likely to invest their earnings in education and family care. The company also employs men, recognizing their role in family and community dynamics.

The Importance of B Corp Certification

Outland Denim’s transition to a B Corp was driven by a desire to be as impactful as possible. The B Corp certification process helped identify areas for improvement. The company started as a non-profit but shifted to a for-profit model to scale its impact, attracting investors and gaining momentum.

Transparency and Trust in Business

Transparency is key to building trust with consumers. Outland Denim focuses on being transparent about both the good and the bad aspects of their operations. This honesty is crucial for establishing a trustworthy brand.

Best Practices and Lessons Learned

James Bartle shares several insights:

  1. Embrace failure as a part of progression.
  2. Focus on legacy and the impact your actions will have on future generations.
  3. Avoid trying to prove your supply chain is clean; instead, actively look for areas to improve.

Vision for the Fashion Industry

Bartle hopes to see a reduction in textiles ending up in landfills and believes the fashion industry can play a significant role in combating poverty. He emphasizes the interconnectedness of environmental and social issues, advocating for a holistic approach to sustainability in fashion.

In conclusion, Outland Denim’s journey is a testament to the power of socially conscious manufacturing in the fashion industry. By focusing on employee welfare, environmental sustainability, and transparent business practices, the company sets an example for others in the industry to follow.

What is B Corp B Fashion?

B Corp B Fashion aims to put together in one place all fashion b-corps and fashion brands want to become it. We want to promote regenerative and sustainable fashion, sharing the best practices from consolidated realities, newcomers, and curious people from the fashion world who want to know the B Corp world and its business way.

Are you a Fashion Brand? Join our community!​

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