Dennis Wise believes Mike Ashley will hold onto Newcastle until next summer rather than sell the club now.
Following the £2m settlement reached with Kevin Keegan last week, Tyneside businessman Barry Moat was hopeful of pressing ahead with his negotiations for the Championship leaders.
Two other consortia are also reportedly in talks with the hierarchy at St James' Park.
But Wise, who was sacked as Newcastle's executive director of football in April, said: 'I think he will hold onto the club until they are promoted. I think they'll go up this year, I genuinely hope they do, then Mike will take a decision next summer.'
The belief is that Ashley would then find it easier to attract bids closer to his £100m valuation once the club returns to premier League status.