Launching the Clackmannanshire Economic Development Partnership (CEDP) in Alloa, Mr McLeish announced a£748,000 cash boost for its first innovative project.
The announcement comes on the same day Mr McLeish announced 148 new jobs in Clackmannanshire - 130 at Strategic Software Solutions Ltd and 18 at ePOINT LIMITED. Both companies are based in Alloa.
CEDP brings together the local council and enterprise company under one banner to deliver all economic development services in the area.
a Learning Plaza using new technology to raise skill levels;
new business units to attract new companies into the area;
a programme to revitalise Alloa Town Centre;
a new Scottish Centre for Autism;
a Centre for Social Entrepreneurship; and
a Centre for Creative Industries
Speaking at the launch of Clackmannanshire Innovation in Alloa, Mr McLeish said:
'The Clackmannanshire Economic Development Partnership will bring a radical and more integrated approach to regenerating the area's many communities.
'Clackmannanshire suffered from long-term economic problems due to industrial decline and the unemployment level is still above the Scottish average.
'These problems require innovative solutions and I'm delighted that Clackmannanshire Economic Development Partnership is geared to provide them.
'This is the first time in Scotland that a council and enterprise company have joined forces to deliver all economic development services through a partnership and it highlights the degree of innovative thinking here.
'One of the partnership's main projects, Clackmannanshire Innovation is already targeting job creation, inward investment and skills development as major priorities and I am delighted to back this with£748,000 from the Scottish executive.
'Together with the 130 new jobs at Strategic Software Solutions and 18 new posts at ePOINT LIMITED which were announced this morning, the new approach is proof that Clackmannan's economy is undergoing a massive transformation.
'I congratulate the local council and enterprise company for driving forward the local economy this way and I look forward to their projects creating even more new jobs in the future.'