Department store group The Bon-Ton Stores Inc on Tuesday won the race for regional department store chain Elder-Beerman Stores Corp with an $8 a share offer which values the company at $92.8 million.

Ohio-based Elder-Beerman is the nation's ninth largest independent department store chain with outlets in its home state as well as West Virginia, Indiana, Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Iowa.

Its acceptance of The Bon-Ton's offer follows a bidding war with management-led buyout group Wright Holdings Inc which had offered $7.80, or $90.5m, on Monday only to see its offer quickly trumped.

Chairman and CEO of The Bon-Ton, Tim Grumbacher, said in a statement he was delighted with the deal which would see Elder-Beerman become a subsidiary of his firm.

"We are very pleased to have the opportunity to merge these two strong retail companies. The strategic and operational potential of this business combination is exceptional and the ability to add value for our shareholders is very compelling," he said.

"The companies have a similar customer base and comparable merchandise offerings, as well as little or no geographic overlap. We look forward to expanding our partnerships with the vendor community, banks and other business partners, as we work toward the common goal of maximising the potential of this acquisition."

The Bon-Ton, headquartered in Pennsylvania, operates 72 department stores in Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and West Virginia.