We founded LABtokyo after many years of working in the design, education and the service industries and throughout this time living in numerous countries and travelling extensively.

Wherever we have lived and worked one thing has remained constant, the need for clear and meaningful communication; almost always in English.

At LABtokyo our objective for every project, be it an English Language course, a Communication Skills programme or any other communication based project, is a highly personalised engagement with positive and meaningful outcomes.   


Nicholas Raistrick   

Founder / Creative Director

The idea behind LABtokyo came about after 30 years of business and educational experience, whilst living in seven different countries and working with professionals from all over the world.

Holding a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts (Newcastle University, UK),  a Master’s in International Business Administration (Ecolé Des Affairs a Paris, France) and a Fellowship of The Royal Society of Arts, Nicholas has split his professional career between Design and Construction and Communication Education and sometimes Design Education.

Over the past 17 years Nicholas has been based in Asia, as a Design and Development Director and has worked on some of the most exciting interior design projects across the region; from international corporate offices in China, Hong Kong and Malaysia to 5 star hotels and luxury resorts in Myanmar, Indonesia and Japan. During this period Nicholas has lectured and provided educational services to the design and business community in Hong Kong, China, Malaysia and Japan.

Prior to moving to Asia Nicholas worked in the construction industry in Europe and whilst based in The UK frequently travelled to France, Italy and The Netherlands. During this period he developed an interest in the importance of communication during the delivery of complex, multi-faceted projects and as this interest grew he began lecturing in Business Communications at Leeds University Business School and Leeds Metropolitan University.

Passionate about Japan, Communication and the world of Art and Design and equally frustrated with the lack of originality and meaningfulness in the way English is taught to adults here Nicholas decided to settle in Tokyo in 2014 and start LAB tokyo with the initial objective of offering a completely fresh and innovative way to study communication in English to professionals from Creative Industries. Since its beginnings LABtokyo has become popular, not only with creative professionals but also professionals from more traditional backgrounds such as finance, real estate, shipping, banking, pharmaceuticals and information technology.

Hiroko Yanase

Founder / Managing Director

With an Honours Degree from Rikkyo University in Hospitality and Tourism; Hiroko has acquired extensive experience of the service industry, having spent 10 years working with Japan Airlines and Cathay Pacific Airlines. In addition to this she has worked in Marketing and Human resources for Toyota, Singapore and Brunel, Tokyo.

Returning to Japan in 2014, after 10 years living and working in Hong Kong and Singapore, Hiroko became a founding partner in LABtokyo applying a wealth of organisational, marketing and human resource skills to complement Nicholas’ educational and creative passion.

Whilst responsible for the day to day running of LABtokyo Hiroko’s involvement extends beyond organisational and administrative duties to include regular Client Counselling Sessions, the organisation of Social Opportunities such as dinner events, art gallery and museum visits and client’s networking events.

With a TOEIC score of over 900 Hiroko provides essential support for Japanese TOEIC learners. Hiroko is also key to provision of services such as document translation, simultaneous translation, English Language Training (where Japanese Language is essential), English Language Hospitality Training and Cultural Training for both Japanese Nationals living overseas and non-Japanese Nationals relocating to Japan. Hiroko has extensive experience of immigration and relocation services for foreign nationals pursuing their careers in Japan.