Fintech start-up Elevate, which is headquartered in Dubai and London, has secured $5 million in new funding to scale its operations and capitalise on the growing trend of remote work and freelancing.

The company facilitates international payments for freelancers and remote workers at lesser fees. It plans to use the funds to expand in the Middle East and Africa, according to a statement.

Elevate, which has so far logged more than 150,000 users from Asia and North Africa since its launch this year, enables users to receive payments from US and international companies, as well as from freelancing platforms such as Upwork, Maqsam, Paypal, Deel and Toptal.

With remote work and freelancing becoming more prevalent in the region, platforms like Upwork are enabling talent from countries like Egypt to earn in US dollars on a global scale, according to Khalid Keenan, CEO of Elevate.

“However, existing solutions for receiving USD payments have been costly and inefficient. Elevate’s mission is to ensure freelancers and remote workers keep as much of their hard-earned money as possible by minimising fees and simplifying the process,” Keenan noted.

The platform also offers debit cards for online purchases and favourable foreign exchange rates for money transfers. Users can move funds back to their local USD accounts for a flat fee of $10.

Funds that are deposited in Elevate accounts are held with Bangor Savings Bank, a 172-year-old institution in the US that also offers FDIC insurance for customer deposits of up to $250,000.

(Writing by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)