JOHANNESBURG - Rwanda-based technology company Mara Corporation said on Friday is was investing $100 million in South Africa to make affordable, high tech smartphones.

Mara founder Ashish Thakkar noted that the African continent currently had over 400 million smartphones in use, and this would expand to over one billion in the next few years.

None, however, were made in Africa, he told the inaugural South African investment conference in Johannesburg.

“A few are assembled in parts of the continent, but nothing is made on our continent. That changes today,” Thakkar said.

“Mara is extremely excited to be investing $100 million in South Africa in the first high tech, high quality affordable smartphhones, in South Africa.”

“As an African brand, as an African company,  made in Africa, made by Africans, it’s time we create these jobs on our continent,” he added to applause from delegates including President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Ramaphosa convened the conference, attended by over 1,000 delegates, as part of government efforts to attract US$100 billion worth of investment over five years and revive South Africa's struggling economy.

- African News Agency (ANA)