The Shaw Trust is set to join bidding consortium 3SC, set up by Ian Charlesworth, its former chief executive.
Charlesworth was put on gardening leave by the trust in July 2007 and eventually resigned after warning that plans to expand into Australia were too risky. He is now commercial director at Social Investment Business and was the driving force behind last year's establishment of 3SC.
Sally Burton, the trust's new chief executive, said she had met Charlesworth, and her organisation, which is the largest voluntary sector provider of employment services for disabled people, would probably join 3SC.
Burton said the trust had to "work smart" by bidding for some contracts on its own and some in collaboration with others.
She added that the trust, which has only three of seven senior management team places filled on a full-time basis, expected to break even this year after losing £2.8m last year.