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Musea Ventures was founded and is led by a father-son team of technologists.

  • Sass Somekh


    Sass Somekh was responsible for leading the development and driving the business  growth of several key products in the Semiconductor-equipment industry. He is the retired Presiden of Novellus Systems. Prior to joining Novellus, he was an Executive VP and a board member at Applied Materials.

    During his 24-year tenure at Applied Materials he played a critical role in transforming it from a $50-million company to the $10-billion semiconductor-equipment industry leader it is today.

    First as an engineer and project manager and then as a senior executive, he has helped create a culture of innovation and a bias for action. Over the years Sass has hired, coached, and promoted hundreds of employees, ranging from new college graduates to managers of billion-dollar product divisions. As a mentor of talent, he contributed his insight and counsel to the building of strong management teams in the semiconductor equipment industry.  

    • In 1993 Sass was recognized as a co-inventor of the Precision 5000 when it became the first semiconductor-manufacturing system to be placed in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institution. It is on display in the Information Age exhibit at the National Museum of American History, Washington, D.C. 

    • In 1994 Sass received the Semiconductor Equipment and Materials Institute’s SEMI Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his many contributions to the industry.

    • In 2006 Sass was inducted into the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame for his professional achievements and contribution to the Silicon Valley community.

    Sass received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Caltech. He holds more than 50 U.S. patents. 



    Talli’s leads Musea’s efforts in synthetic biology and software with a particular focus on industrial biology, genomics and cloud computing. 

     He is co-founder and acting CEO of Designer Energy, an Israeli company focusing on the development of processes for the production of low cost sugar for use in industrial biology. He helped form the team, recruiting scientists and engineers from top Israeli universities, and develop the business model. Designer Energy is now engaged in a collaboration with the Brazilian energy giant Petrobras. 

    He is also the co-founder and Executive Chairman of CloudPassage which is developing the most comprehensive solution for cloud security. Co-founded with a 20 year veteran in information security for financial institutions, Talli led the fund raising strategy resulting in over $7.5M in seed and venture funding highlighted by Benchmark Capital leading the Series A investment in March 2011. 

    In addition to founding new companies, Talli has led Musea’s investments in Acoustic Cytometry Systems (acquired by Life Technologies,) Avantome (acquired by Illumina,) Ion Torrent (acquired by Life Technologies,) Piston Cloud Computing, SpaceCurve and Verdezyne.

    Prior to Musea Ventures, Talli was at Sol-Gel Technologies where he acted as Director of Marketing and Strategic Planning. His responsibilities included developing the company's consumer product business plan as well as interfacing with venture firms during Sol-Gel's successful Series C fund raising round 

    Out of college, he founded Musea Technologies, a consulting firm specializing in developing free and open source software for nonprofit organizations. His clients included small, neighborhood organization as well as well known, institutional groups likeGreenpeace International and the Sloan School of Management at MIT.

    Furthermore, he is a collaborator in the 1KP project, a collaboration between the University of Alberta, the Beijing Genomics Institute and Musea Ventures to sequence 1000 plants.