Joined: June 2016
PARTNER, INNOVATIONS INVESTMENT COMMITTEE
Information Technology/SaaS/Big Data
Real Estate and Construction
Sassan is a partner at Blu Venture Investors and serves on the Innovations Investment Committee. He began his career in the IT sector, working in leadership positions for various IT professional services firms in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. In 1997, he co-founded Paragon Technology Group with his wife, Gazelle Hashemian Kimiavi. Together, they successfully grew the company until they sold it in 2012. Sassan—whose experience includes IT governance and implementation of complex IT systems for clients in the pharmaceutical and telecommunication sectors, the Department of Defense, and various federal agencies—served as the CEO of the company for 15 years prior to its sale. After the sale of Paragon, he founded ALTA Development LLC and ALTA Worldwide LLC, where he currently serves as the president and CEO. ALTA companies are focused on commercial and residential real estate development. Sassan received his bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering in 1985 from GW. In 1987 and 1998, respectively, he received his master of science and doctorate of science degrees in computer science from GW.
As an early-stage investor, Sassan enjoys helping entrepreneurs innovate and grow their companies. When evaluating startups, he looks for a well-supported idea behind the company, a path to profitable growth and an eventual exit, and a strong executive team that is able to execute and deliver on the business plan.
Real Estate Development
What drives you to invest in early stage companies?
I am excited to participate in growth of early stage companies and help entrepreneurs innovate, grow their companies, create jobs, and contribute to the broader economy.
What do you look for in a startup company?
The idea/innovation behind the company, the market opportunity and fit within the competitive landscape
Business Plan: the company’s business plan including its revenue/cost model and path to profitable growth and eventual exit
A strong executive team: that has the experience and organization/harmony to execute and deliver on the business plan
Valuation and Funding requirements