With golf returning to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games, Microsoft Corp. will use its new three-year partnership with the PGA Tour as a global marketing platform.

The technology giant will leverage the tie by mining the PGA Tour’s video library and historical statistics to provide data-driven insights for fans, players and broadcasters across PGA Tour platforms.  

While Microsoft uses the majority of its sponsorships to showcase hero products (NASCAR and Windows 10, NFL and Xbox and Surface tablets, etc.), the company will use the PGA Tour to promote multiple products under a technology solutions umbrella.

“The PGA Tour draws an affluent, business decision-maker oriented audience that is receptive to our solution offerings,” said Jason Campbell, Microsoft director of marketing, windows and devices group.

“Microsoft’s differentiator is our best-in-class products, and they’re a powerful solution when applied together. Windows 10 and Microsoft Azure will enable the PGA Tour to capture data, run analytics and render that information to fans and players.”

The partnership will help the PGA Tour better connect with fans, said Norb Gambuzza, PGA Tour senior vice president of media business development.

“The time, energy and funding that is committed to the collaboration will help us elevate our game in how we present content to fans.”

The partnership took roughly three years to put together, said Gambuzza, noting that conversations started as a content play.

“Microsoft was initially interested in distributing PGA Tour content. Several months into it, it became apparent there was an opportunity for a larger partnership, not just a distribution deal.”

Microsoft plans to activate the partnership via PGA Tour media and digital inventory as well as B2B and BC2 activation programs at tournaments. The company also will develop apps for Microsoft devices and platforms across Windows 10, Surface tablets and Lumia phones.

Microsoft engineers and development teams will visit PGA Tour headquarters later this month to work on technology integration, said Gambuzza.

“They’ve already built out a milestone schedule that we’ll operate under over the next 12 to 18 months.”

The sponsorship gives Microsoft status as the official operating system, official analytics partner and official office productivity software of the PGA Tour and Champions Tour.