Derby are hopeful of securing Dean Moxey's signature after positive negotiations with Exeter over the 23-year-old utility player.
The Grecians rejected an opening bid - thought to be £200,000 plus add-ons - for the left-sided player, who still has a year remaining on his current contract at St James Park.
But Derby's chairman of football Adam Pearson says negotiations are on-going and he is hopeful agreement can be reached.
Pearson told the Derby Telegraph: "The negotiations have been positive and so is our relationship with Exeter.
"They have been very professional in the way they have undertaken things and, hopefully, we can reach an agreement in the near future.
"Talks are on-going and we will be looking to move them towards a positive conclusion."
Exeter's director of football Steve Perryman added: "They are very nice people to deal with at Derby - it is a very respectful club.
"Talks are on-going but there is nothing else to report at the moment."
Meanwhile, Pearson said there had been no further developments concerning two more Derby defensive targets - Blackpool's Shaun Barker and John Brayford of Crewe.
Blackpool recently rejected a bid of £400,000, rising to £500,000 with add-ons, for Barker, while Crewe turned down an undisclosed offer for Brayford during the January transfer window.
Pearson added: "Nothing is happening with Shaun Barker at the moment.
"We are considering which way to go with it, and the same goes for John Brayford."