Britain - Valtteri Bottas' expected move from Williams to Mercedes looks set to be finalised this week.
That is the latest news in the wake of Nico Rosberg's shock retirement, which will surely also involve Felipe Massa calling off his retirement to fill the place left by the Mercedes-bound Bottas.
A great opportunity
British newspapers including The Guardian quote Claire Williams, Williams' deputy principal, as saying it would "not be nice to stop a driver who has such a great opportunity. We've always said if we can make this happen on terms that are positive for Williams then it is probably the right thing to do.
"We are nearly there - we are at the tail end of it and hope we'll be able to make an announcement this coming week."
It is believed the complex deal with Mercedes also involves the early arrival at Williams of the reigning world champions' technical boss Paddy Lowe.
Williams said: "Of course someone like Paddy, now that he is available, is going to be appealing to us. He started his career at Williams - and what team wouldn't want someone like Paddy Lowe?"