The RLJ Companies L.L.C. has invested in the stock of AV International L.L.C., a minority-owned firm that is active in the health plan stop-loss market.

Robert L. Johnson, the founder and chairman of the RLJ Companies, Bethesda, Md., is also the founder of Black Entertainment Television.

AV International, Wayne, Pa., is an insurance broker and the parent of Amerifirst, a managing general underwriter in the health, property-casualty and voluntary benefits markets.

RLJ will be helping AV expand the Amerifirst stop-loss operation, the companies say.

RLJ is not saying how much it is investing in AV, but Andre Duggin, the chief executive officer of AV, says the investment will give Amerifirst the ability to participate in a share of stop-loss risk.

“When it comes to premium spend, insurance companies have faced a challenge in complying with diversity requirements set forth by states, towns, municipalities and corporations because there were no minority-owned or controlled insurance companies with proper qualifications and ratings,” Duggin says in a statement. “We have now changed that model.”

-ab