Mara Phones – Who are you?

Today, we going to find out who or what Mara Phones are. It is going to be an interesting article as this particular smartphone brand is going to make an impact in my own country, South Africa!

We will be discussing the following regarding Mara Phones:

  • Who are Mara Phones?
  • Where they are established?
  • Smartphone ranges currently available
  • Awards and changes for Mara Phones

This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. However, this does not impact our reviews and comparisons. We try our best to keep things fair and balanced, in order to help you make the best choice for you. Also, we do not charge you extra.

Who are Mara Phones?

Of course, the first thing everyone will be asking, “Who or what are Mara Phones?” As they are not known worldwide yet and has a unique name to it as well.

Mara Phones is a subsidiary of the Dubai headquarter Mara Corporation. Mara Corporation manufactures smartphones in Africa for which they are very proud for. Thus, Mara Phones is a smartphone brand that is based in Africa!

Sadly, they are not the first to launch smartphone factories in the African Continent. The smartphone brand AfriOne Mobile takes that honor that is based in Nigeria.


Where are they established?

Mara Corporation is a multi-sector business that does not just operate in manufacturing smartphones. They also operate in technology, financial services, real-estate and agriculture industries.

Mara Corporation was first a small business that started in 1996 by Ashish J. Thakkar. Over the years the corporations operations grew and expanded across 24 countries including 22 in Africa.

Around 11,000 people are working for the Mara corporation.

They have factories for manufacturing the Mara Phones in the following countries:

  • Rwanda (Kenya Kigali)
  • South Africa (Durban)

Both of these countries manufacturing plants made their debut in October 2019 where they also launched their first smartphone series which were Mara X and Mara Z. On their debut, both countries had visits from their own presidents and government to witness the beginning of something new for their countries.

Smartphone ranges currently available:

So I have already mentioned of the Mara X and Mara Z. Now these are 2019 models and Mara’s first smartphone series. In September 2020, Mara has launched their new smartphone series which are the following:

  • Mara X1
  • Mara Z1
  • Mara S

Now the big question of course is, how much do the 2020 models differ with their 2019 models. Let’s find out now:

The main differences for Mara X models are the following:

  • The Mara X1 is 0,588 inches bigger than the Mara X.
  • Mara X1 is 3g heavier than the Mara X.
  • The Mara X1 has a different camera layout and better megapixel camera or more camera lenses than the Mara X.
  • Mara X1 has 2GB more RAM than the Mara X, making it operate faster than its 2019 model.
  • Mara X1 has 16GB more memory on board compare to the Mara X.
  • The battery of the Mara X is removable, whereas the Mara X1 battery is non-removable and lasts bit longer than its 2019 model.

Overall, the Mara X1 is a massive uplift from its first 2019 model, Mara X.


The main differences for Mara Z models are the following:

  • The Mara Z1 is 0,8 inches bigger than the Mara Z.
  • Mara Z1 is 31g heavier than the Mara Z.
  • Both Mara Z series have the same front camera megapixel. However, the rear camera of both smartphones are totally different. The Mara Z1 has 3 camera lenses while the Mara Z only has 1 camera lens.
  • Mara Z1 has 1GB more RAM than the Mara Z, meaning it operates and runs faster than the Mara Z.
  • The memory capacity on board of the Mara Z1 is 32GB more than the previous Mara Z, which is awesome!
  • The battery capacity of the Mara Z1 last 925mAh longer than the Mara Z.

Overall, the Mara Z1 also dominates it previous 2019 model, Mara Z.


The following Mara smartphone series is the first of its kind and is aimed at customers with a smartphone budget below R1000:



Mara is planning to release their first tablet soon, which you can register to be notified when it launches and be part of the first group of users to pre-order for it. Here is the website link to register for it.

Awards and changes for Mara Phones

Mara Phones in April 2021, was awarded and approved by the government in South Africa the RT15-2021, contract which means ” the supply and delivery of mobile communication services to the government for the period April 1, 2021, till March 31st 2026.” The contract was first with Vodacom since the year 2016. Now not anymore.

The national treasury give preference for Mara Phones compare to other smartphone brand due it is a local mobile device and not from a foreign country. The government wants the country to grow and Mara Phones is a good example of economic growth for the country.

In South Africa, there was another thing that happen or must I say changed. A MD was appointed for Mara Phones operations in South Africa, who is named Sylvester Taku. He was appointed by Mara Phones CEO, Ashish J Thakkar that believes in Sylvester Taku’s ability to spot new opportunities in the business and will help the growth of the Mara Phones brand in South Africa.

Since Sylvester Taku was assigned as MD, he signed distribution deals with multiple local outlets and even opened SA’s first Mara Experience Store at Maponya Mall in Soweto. Yes, you read right! Mara Phones has its own store just like other smartphone brands like Apple, iStore is a good example.

There you will experience and learn all about the new African smartphone brand, Mara Phones, It is a great place to get to know more about the Mara Phones and as well experience how the smartphones are in real life. Definitely, would recommend you to make a turn there.


The Mara Phones brand is still very new to the smartphone market. However, is making waves in the Africa continent slowly, but rapidly as well. As they planted the manufacturing plants in 2019 and in 2020 they already have their own unique store setup in South Africa.

Plus their smartphone series are improving greatly. Thus, keep an eye out for them or give them a try at least. The government and president is already convinced it is the beginning of big things for their country. As economic growth is greatly needed, especially after and still the pandemic is causing to their country.

My opinion the Mara Phones brand is still unknown, however exciting product as it is homemade in South Africa. Meaning it will be more affordable and easier to obtain than other smartphone brands that are imported from worldwide countries. Give Mara Phones a chance and if you uncertain of their smartphones, please contact them on their website directly.

If you in the area of Maponya Mall in Soweto, please make a turn to Mara Phones store to learn more of the brand and be exposed of their smartphone series available. You can purchase their smartphones at the store or at other retail outlets which will be available later in the year. You can also order online directly with the following offers:

Hope you enjoyed the article and will consider trying Mara Phones out as soon as possible!


4 thoughts on “Mara Phones – Who are you?”

  1. I live in Port Elizabeth, and this is the first time that I have heard of Mara Phones. It must have hit Gauteng first and will be making its way down to this part of the world at a later date.

    It looks like a great little phone and a fraction of the price of an Apple or a Samsung, which is great as now everyone can afford to own a smartphone and stay connected. I love that it still has all the great features of conventional smartphones including a good quality camera.

    • Hi Michel

      Thank you for your comment!

      Mara Phones is still not known to many people and the country, but will soon be after the contract they have been approved by the South Africa government. Mara Phones should be appearing shortly in the known smartphone service providers catalogs or stores as well. 

      The features of the Mara Phones have in their smartphones, has a good start compare to other known smartphone brands and I believe it is the beginning of good things still to come. Love the price point as well with the great features we receiving with the Mara Phones.

  2. Hi,

    Congrats to South Africa and Rwanda for being home to Mara Phones factories! How many people work at each factory? That is a great step forward and I hope the brand reaches many customers. I love the look of the Mara Phones Store at Maponya Mall in Soweto–and the Lion logo is fantastic. Will the Mara Phone be available in other countries? If so, when? 

    Very interesting info–great review. 



    • Hi Tamara

      Thank you for your comment and the congratulations for South Africa and Rwanda.

      Approximately 200 people are employed at each factory of which 90% is youth! Also of the 200 employees at each factory, are 60% women employed there.

      I love the logo as well as it stands out nicely compare to other smartphone brands. Mara Phones are available currently by ordering online directly from them for now. Already 43 countries are ordering from them online of which shows how popular they are becoming.


Leave a Comment

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)