Staying Curious podcast episode 002: Matthew Wallace, CEO and Co-Founder of DXM Inc.

Is the fashion industry ripe for a consumer-led disruption of business as usual?

Is the fashion industry ripe for a consumer-led disruption of business as usual?

That’s the view of Matthew Wallace, who is Host Amy Heuschkel’s guest on this episode of The Staying Curious Podcast.

After a robust career working in big retail for such giants as Wal-Mart and the parent company of brands like Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger, the CEO and Co-Founder of Project DXM is pushing for a paradigm shift that embraces more sustainable practices for an industry slow to adapt but under more scrutiny every day. 

Customers  drive the apparel and footwear industry towards more responsible practices

It won’t happen overnight, but Matthew firmly believes that the time has come for customers to drive the apparel and footwear industry towards more responsible practices. Why? Because it’s the right thing to do for the planet – and for the bottom line. Technological advances are making it possible for even the largest brands to carve out options that allow individuals to design and personalize the clothes they wear.

Such customization will significantly reduce waste and speak to consumers – most especially younger generations – who are unwilling to continue supporting antiquated supply chain practices that exacerbate global hot-button problems. 

Learn all about Project DXM

Learn all about Project DXM and the ways in which it’s leveraging resources from across disciplines to innovate a new platform. Their unique vision is built on a localized, enterprise-scale ecosystem that supports the ability of best-in-class partners to customize, personalize, co-create, test and deliver product quickly and sustainably. 


DXM is an open, end-to-end software platform that enables brands, retailers and creators to custom fit, personalize, co-create or test product and optimize inventory with delivery in days

Matthew Wallace, CEO and Co-Founder of DXM Inc.

  • [00:50] Aimee provides highlights from Matthew’s enviable career track record in the fashion industry.  

  • [02:00] Matthew shares the download on Project DXM, a fashion tech startup that is fusing consumer needs with industry 4.0 by putting the power of the value chain in the hands of consumers. 

  • [03:26] About the timing and “why” behind the DXM concept, which predates pandemic supply chain disruption. It’s about responding to evolving demands on the part of consumers who want a more agile manufacturing process. 

  • [05:36] Research that Matthew and his team have done indicate that younger generations, hyper-connected through social media, value sustainability and therefore a more customized, localized approach to fashion design and consumption.  

  • [08:40] Highly automated digital processes are drastically eliminating waste and water use; part of a bigger pivot towards sustainability as a core industry value. 

  • [09:45] Matthew explains the adoption of an on-demand model by larger brands that want at least a percentage of their offerings to be agile. It’s a personalized third prong for a supply chain that has historically only offered low and slow production or high-volume mass manufacturing.  

  • [12:55] The fashion industry remains among the top offenders when it comes to sustainability, a status Matthew believes younger generations will not tolerate. With no particular brand loyalty, they won’t hesitate to voice objections by boycotting – and posting about it! 

The DXM Project

  • [15:20] DXM is taking a page from the auto industry, aligning a broad knowledge base to make change happen. The project is leveraging some 21 resources committed to evolving manufacturing processes because it’s good for the planet – and the bottom line. 

  • [17:11] Traditionally everything has revolved around the big manufacturers and retailers, but the DXM model is carving out a wedge of the business that will level the playing field with customized, co-created products generated with more sustainable practices. 

  • [19:35] Customization, inclusivity, sustainability – these are new values that aren’t going anywhere. Matthew credits organizations that are willing to go out and try new models, opening their brands up to changes that are inevitable but slow to evolve.  

  • [20:54] Marketing sometimes has to play catch-up, which Matthew believes is the case for the fashion industry by comparison even to industries like gas and oil that have grasped the urgency younger generations especially attach to sustainable practices. 

  • [22:00] The DXM Project is designed to help consumers disrupt the fashion industry in the way that electric cars started out painstakingly two decades ago and, through technological development and marketing outreach, now have a momentum that is unstoppable. 

Gerber Innovation Center features the Gerber Microfactory which is a fully connected solution that enables customized, made-to-measure and on-demand production.