Matt Moussilou is expected to be confirmed as a St Etienne player later on Thursday.
Nice have agreed to loan the 24-year-old to St Etienne until the end of the current campaign, with the option to make the switch permanent in the summer if he impresses.
The move will end a dreadful spell in Nice for the striker, who failed to score a single goal for the club.
Despite the impending arrival of Moussilou, St Etienne officials remain keen to add at least one more striker to the squad with Frederic Piquionne set to depart.
Piquionne has fallen out with club officials over his desire to move to Lyon during the January transfer window.
A move to the Stade Gerland appears to still be out of the question, opening up the possibility of a swap deal involving Portsmouth.
Reports in France claim Pompey and St Etienne have had talks about a possible exchange involving Benjani Mwaruwari.
Arsenal youngster Jeremie Aliadiere and Barcelona's Javier Saviola are also being linked with moves to the Stade Geoffrey-Guichard.
Les Verts officials also travelled to Colombia recently in the hope of securing an unnamed starlet's services.
"It is not easy to find the right striker during the January transfer window, and South Americans need an adaptation period," director of sports Omar da Fonseca told Le Progres.
Chairman Bernard Caiazzo added: "We are waiting for a couple of answers, we have three prospects but haven't found a financial agreement yet. Somebody will come."
Meanwhile, a defender is also high on St Etienne's list of priorities with Corinthians full-back Edson thought to be targets for the Ligue 1 side.