KARLSRUHE, Germany (AP) _ American discount retail giant Wal-Mart Inc. will acquire German supermarket chain Wertkauf, the German company said today. Financial terms were not disclosed.

The deal will close Dec. 31, Wertkauf said.

Wal-Mart will take over Wertkauf's 21 outlets, which expect to record 2.5 billion marks, or $1.4 billion, in group sales in 1997, Wertkauf said.

Wertkauf employs about 6,000 people.

Wal-Mart's sales came close to $105 billion in 1996, making it the world's largest retailer.

Wal-Mart Chief Executive Bob Martin said Wal-Mart has been focusing for some time on expansion in European markets, especially Germany, Europe's largest retail market.

Wertkauf is owned by the Mann family of Karlsruhe, Germany.