Mara Phones, South Africa’s only mobile devices manufacturer is upbeat after they were recently awarded the RT15-2021 contract to supply smartphones to the government for the next five years.
National Treasury, gave preference to local mobile device manufacturers and since Mara Phones is the only one of its kind in the country and in Africa, they were placed first in the published list of nominated OEMs to supply smartphones.
Quoting the awarded contract, Sylvester Taku, Managing Director of Mara Phones SA said, “All other device brands supplied by Vodacom, MTN, Cell C and Telkom in terms of the recently-announced five-year transversal contract are now considered secondary to Mara Phones.” This makes Mara Phones the sole provider of mobile devices to the government.
Taku further noted that, “It is a huge boost to South Africa’s local economy and employment, and it demonstrates the Government’s and the network operators’ absolute faith in us as South Africa’s flagship smartphone brand. We are thrilled that our decision to manufacture locally will soon enable Mara Phones to invest even more in growing this awesome local brand and to positively contribute to the unemployment challenge in South Africa.”
Mara Phones is listed across the four networks (Vodacom, MTN, Cell C and Telkom) as the first preferred brand.
On the reasoning behind this, the circular states: “National Treasury together with the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition supports the Proudly South African campaign and the objectives of the Industrial Policy Action Plan, especially those aimed at promoting the procurement of domestically produced goods and services.”
Also commenting on the contract, Mara Phones Group CEO, Ashish J. Thakkar said, “This is outstanding news, and it comes on the back of the heightened importance of countries investing in their own capacity when it comes to critical goods and services.”
“We are looking forward to working with the big four telecoms firms to supply the world’s best, South African-made smart devices to all government departments, agencies and institutions,” added Thakkar.
Mara Phones opened its first bricks-and-mortar Mara Experience Store, In 2020 at Maponya Mall, Soweto exactly a year after unveiling the country’s first smartphone manufacturing facility in KwaZulu-Natal province.
The company is a subsidiary of Mara Corporation, a proudly African brand and company that has been working on the continent for over two and a half decades.
Taku, praised the South African Government’s massive vote of confidence in its decision to recognise Mara Phones as its preferred device brand in all procurements for the next five years.