Editor’s note: Today is earnings news day for Cisco, and its new CEO Chuck Robbins – a UNC graduate – will be on the firing line with the tech giant expected to report what Technology Business Research Analyst Krista Macomber forecasts will be “tepid” growth. But don’t look for Robbins to slow down any of the strategic changes he is making after replacing John Chambers. Cisco employs thousands of people at its sprawling campus in RTP.

HAMPTON, N.H. – Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) achieved tepid growth in 2Q15, per TBR estimates, but the company cannot slow its execution on strategic initiatives.

In light of slowing demand for Cisco’s Nexus switch and UCS server offerings as customers complete upgrades following the portfolios’ refresh during 2014, TBR expects Cisco to post on Wednesday 2% year-to-year revenue growth for 2Q15. This expected performance is a slowdown from the 5% expansion that Cisco achieved in 1Q15.

However, it is still a success considering economic upheaval in emerging countries including Brazil and Russia and intensifying competition from several smaller players including Huawei and Juniper.

In addition to driving network and server product sales, TBR believes that Cisco continued increasing its footprint in growing, strategic markets such as security. In these markets, Cisco is monetizing portfolio investments, including its July 2013 Sourcefire acquisition, that address customers’ pressing next-generation IT requirements. Recent industry earnings announcements, including from Juniper, indicate that service provider customers incrementally increased spending on network modernization during 2Q15, which TBR also predicts contributed to year-to-year top-line gains for Cisco.

Not unlike its peers, Cisco’s long-term growth is predicated on its ability to achieve a more agile business model. Large multi-year service contracts, increased penetration of growing, strategic markets including security, managed services and hyperconverged infrastructure, and encouraging more customers to utilize Cisco’s software-defined networking (SDN) capabilities will become increasingly pressing for Cisco. Customers are reducing spending on traditional IT infrastructure, including the proprietary switches and routers that Cisco has built its business around.

Cisco’s recent exit of the flash storage market and its planned divestiture of its set-top box business indicate that it is willing to exit misplaced or mismanaged portfolio bets in favor of increasing spend in markets with stronger opportunity for profit and differentiation. Both of these decisions were made under new CEO Chuck Robbins, indicating that Robbins is moving quickly to guide Cisco through portfolio, alliance and go-to-market strategy evolution.

TBR believes that Cisco’s go-forward path to success centers on positioning as a preeminent partner to help channel partners navigate the transition to as-a-service IT delivery, fluidly adjusting resources to deliver comprehensive software- and services-led offerings, and continuing to hone its business outcomes-focused narrative in tandem with the rising influence of line-of-business IT decision makers.

Although a tall order for a large industry incumbent historically known for expensive, closed hardware, Cisco is demonstrating an ability to evolve its strategy and execute to remain an industry mainstay.